Gifts And Blessings

“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.”

1 Peter 4:10-11 NIV

As God’s creation, each of us has been blessed and have God-given gifts and abilities.  Our purpose in our lives is to love the Lord, love others and to learn about and use the gifts He has given us to serve in our communities.  What gifts has God given you?  What can you do or provide to others in your family, your neighborhood or your faith community?  If you are unsure, turn towards God in prayer and seek His will for you.  Amen.

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We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a] faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.”

Romans 12:6-8 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2021 on a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)

The Gift Of God

The Spirit with in us.  It guides us and leads us…not with anger, bitterness and disrespectful behaviors, rather is provides the Fruit of the Spirit for all aspects of our lives.  Amen.

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.”

2 Timothy 1:6-7

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Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. 14 Do everything in love.”

1 Corinthians 16:13-14

(This photo was taken in April of 2020 in a neighborhood near Plymouth, Minnesota)

Gifts And Blessings

As God’s creation, each of us has been blessed and have God-given gifts and abilities.  Our purpose in our lives is to love the Lord and to learn about and use the gifts He has given us to contribute to our communities.  What gifts has God given you?  What can you do or provide to others in your family, your neighborhood or your faith community?  If you are unsure, turn towards God in prayer and seek His will for you.  Amen.

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We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a] faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.”

Romans 12:6-8

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 on a golf course in northwestern Wisconsin)

Do Your Best

The struggle is real…we strive and we press to finish and to see the result…only to find the race is not over…there is more that needs to be done.  We were made for community to lift each other up and encourage one another.  Each of us has been given different gifts to offer to others, we can’t be everything to everyone and if we try, we will be going off course with God’s plan.  Learn what God has planned for you and the blessings and abilities He has given to you for this life.  Seek to do your best according to God’s will and you will find peace.  Amen.

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Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

Hebrews 12:1-3

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 at Sapphire Point near Dillon, Colorado)

Forgiveness And For Goodness

These are the presents we receive from God, not only at Christmas, we receive these every day of our lives.  It is up to us to accept these gifts and to trust in the Lord.  We are forgiven because of Jesus Christ and we receive goodness from God’s Holy Spirit within us.  All throughout the bible the miracles performed included Jesus involving someone else in completing the miracle.  An example would be the little boy who had the fish and bread, that was to be multiplied for all to eat.  God wants us to accept the gift of forgiveness from Jesus and to open our hearts and minds to the goodness of the Holy Spirit and God wants each of us to participate in the story.  God loves you; God forgives you and He is ready to lead you to good things.  Accept these gifts from God.  Amen.

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“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

James 1:17

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 in Glacier National Park in Montana)

Gifts And Abilities

When you are unsure how you can best contribute…ask God.  How can I help?  Learn about yourself and your abilities.  What comes naturally to you?  What seems easy for you that others struggle doing?  What can you do that fulfills the need of another?  It can be anything.  God knows you and knows how He created you…don’t believe your value based on the world’s standards, let God be the judge.  Seek Him and His will.  Pray about it and pay attention for God’s answers in your everyday life.  Amen.

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Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.  Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”

1 Peter 4:9-10

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 – the statue is called “Our Lady of the Rockies” and can be seen near Butte, Montana)

Gifts And Serving Others

Each person is unique is some way.  Everyone has a different combination of strengths and weaknesses.  No individuals were made to stand alone or to be isolated from the community.  We are designed to work together to use our blessings to help fulfill the needs of others and for others to help fulfill our needs.  The things that get in the way are sin…pride and selfishness, judgement and favoritism…these exist in everyone on all sides of every issue.  Each of us should assess ourselves and understand what are our strengths and gifts to offer…the important thing to remember is the value of our gifts in God’s eyes not value according to the world’s perspective…because even if what we can offer will change life for just 1 or a few other people, we are still changing the world for good in the eyes of God.  Peace be with you on your journey.  Amen.

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“Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.  Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in is various forms.”

1 Peter 4:9-10

(This photo was taken in June of 2018 while driving near the South Dakota and Minnesota border)

Gifts For Your Faith Journey

Each one of us has been blessed with gifts, abilities, strengths.  God created us out of His love and our love for God can be expressed best by using the gifts He has given us for good things.  The hesitation or fear we sense when we are unsure about things can be very uncomfortable…we must be willing to take time and reflect on times when God has showed up and we were made aware of our gifts.  We also need to be sure to be in prayer and not take all our cues about who we are or what we can do from the world as evil and darkness wants us to do very little in relation to what God intended for us.  Our Faith is a journey and the best part is God packed our bag full of the right things for us to take on this journey…it is up to us to be sure we talk with Him about it often and use the things God has given us.  I pray we all have courage, confidence and trust in the Lord until the day we go home to be with Him.  Amen.

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“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant!  You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.  Come and share in your master’s happiness!”

Matthew 25:21

(This photo was taken in October of 2018 while on a walk in northwestern Wisconsin)

Call To Serve

If you find yourself frustrated, anxious or worried more often than usual you may be spending too much time focused on things that are self-serving.  Typically I have found on my journey that contentment and joy come from serving the needs of another.  Providing help where it is needed most.  This does not have to be a major undertaking or monumental tasks…it can be what is most needed, when it is most needed.  Maybe someone needs a ride to get to work…holding a door open for someone who has their hands full with someone or something…preparing a meal…or just sitting and listening.  We all have gifts and abilities to share and we are called by God to serve one another.  May God bless you with wisdom and understanding.

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“You, my brothers, were called to be free.  But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love.”

Galatians 5:13

(This photo was taken in July of 2018 in the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior)

Use Your Gifts

All of us have something that comes naturally for us to do.  Things we do well that can help others and serve a useful purpose.  Our gifts or strengths that God has blessed us with could help support the basics in life…food, shelter or clothing.  They also could be gifts that help spread the Good News of the Lord.  Whatever they are and whatever they help you to do…get to know them, understand how to use them best and if you are not sure about this…start by asking God in prayer to help you to see the goodness He has planted in you and where and when to use it.  All that is good comes from God and He created you, don’t take your cues about your worth from the world.  Learn from the Creator about your goodness and use your gifts from Him to help others.  May God’s love and joy surround you each day.

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“Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”

1 Peter 4:10

(This photo was taken in June of 2016 at a lake place in northwestern Wisconsin)