Spiritual Gifts Must Be Practiced – Part 2
"And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him." Colossians 3:17
"For we walk by faith, not by sight." 2 Corinthians 5:7
All of the gifts of the Spirit, the gifts of God, and the Gifts of Jesus operate by faith, motivated by love. And they are only manifested by the will and actions of the ones to whom the gift has been given. The person(s) possessing any of these gifts will never be coerced into expressing them as by some force taking over their minds and will and making them to do or say something they don’t want to do or say. But the exercising of every gift rests solely in the will of the one who possesses the gift.
“For in this way you can give testimony [prophesying and thus interpreting the divine will and purpose] one by one, so that all may be instructed and all may be stimulated and encouraged; for the spirits of the prophets (the speakers in tongues) are under the speaker’s control [and subject to being silenced as may be necessary], for He [Who is the source of their prophesying] is not a God of confusion and disorder but of peace and order. As [is the practice] in all the churches of the saints (God’s people)…” 1 Corinthians 14:31-33 AMP
Have you sensed God calling you to some act of ministry of the gifts listed above? Have you desired to prophecy, to speak in tongues, to interpret tongues, to exhort another person or a small gathering, or the whole church? Have you heard a Word from the Lord concerning a situation, a person or received a special insight into something pending, but you’ve hesitated to act on it? It may be that you need to be encouraged to know that what you have received is from the Lord. How do you do that? How do you know?
If you’ve never prophesied before or exhorted others to good works, know first of all that God is pleased with those who desire to bless His people. It is ok and indeed it is commanded of us to test the spirits of the things we receive, to know if they are from God or from the devil.
God has given you people you can trust to speak honestly and compassionately with you, without any hint of condemnation. Seek out one of those people and as ask for their counsel where what you have received is concerned. Caution: do not just share your innermost thoughts with a novice or someone who only appears to be spiritual but is still young in the faith and not yet subject to the discipline of confidentiality and discretion.
Seek out a mature brother or sister who has matured in the love of God and the knowledge of His Word. Your Pastor should be that kind of person, but there are also others whom you have observed are consistent in their faith and their actions over time. Seek them out prayerfully and share with them what God has spoken to you. If they affirm that what you have heard is consistent with the Word and Character of God, then by faith give what you have received to the person, group, situation or the Church as the Spirit of God prompts you.
Don’t be afraid to speak when you have a Word of prophecy, exhortation or comfort. God is with you and He will not cause you to be embarrassed or ashamed, but you will be a blessing to those He loves