Welcome to the Sunday devotion. During this time let’s clear our minds of the things left undone on our to-do list. Clear our minds of those frustrations that distract us. Are we hoarding any anger or disappointment? Focus on breaking free of worries and burdens. Letting go means we can focus our mind and heart on God and open our hearts to experience compassion. And forgiveness. Whether in silence or out loud, say this: “God, I come to you. Help me open my life to you.” Take a breath and say it again. Breathe and say it a third time.
As you open space for God, start allowing yourself to reflect and identify all the good things about yourself and seek to acknowledge your giftedness. Do you accept and acknowledge that you are special and have gifts to offer to the world? Many of us feel we do not have a special gift or talent. Perhaps we‘ve overlooked them. Perhaps we are too focused on wishing for a gift that we see in someone else. Do you fall into one of these categories? In Romans 12:6 we are told “Since our gifts vary depending on the grace poured out on each of us, it is important that we exercise the gifts we have been given.”
I remember speaking at church about sharing our gifts and talents and it caused me to once again wish that I could sing with a clear and beautiful voice. There was a woman at church whose voice I loved. It was magical and I dearly wished to have such an amazing gift. But then I assessed the kinds of things that were my gifts. I do have the gift of creativity. I find ways to incorporate drama, puppetry, poetry, and Christian clowning into my ministry and I realized how much I enjoyed offering this gift. So would I want to trade my creativity for a voice that could sing so beautifully? I realized that the answer was no. I didn’t want to give up my creativity. So I was content and truly appreciative to God for giving me my gifts.
Next I reflected on valuing others for their unique gifts instead of feeling frustrated about their weaknesses. We need all the gifts to make up the body of Christ. “The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” So build each other up and help one another recognize and celebrate the value of all persons.
Recently in our congregation we focused on the gift we all have when we share in the ministry of presence. With that gift we enjoy the Blessings of Community, the Unity in Diversity and Worth of All Persons – all part of the Enduring Principles of Community of Christ. (https://cofchrist.org/about-us/)
“Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” (Romans 12:10). As we identify and value the gifts of every person, we are building our relationship with Jesus Christ and, in turn, building our relationship with God. Make it a goal to share with someone today, the value of their presence in your life. Make a phone call. Send a text. Recognize and honor them as God recognizes and honors you.
Various authors throughout the Chesapeake Bay Mission Center and beyond provide these thought-provoking weekly devotions.