If this sounds a little familiar it is because I wrote and posted this same post last year. Something reminded me about using talents in ministry last week. I honestly don’t remember what, but I did remember that I wanted to update and re-post.
We all have so much we can give to God. There really isn’t much we can’t give to God. Our limitations on what He can use are usually just that, our limitations. We hold back. Offer what you have and He will decide what is useful.
Talents for Ministry
So the first step is surrender. Give Him your life. Once you do that a whole new world of opportunity is revealed to you. It is then a matter of how much of the time, talents, and goods He has entrusted to us we are willing to give back to Him. Something I have learned, often in difficult lessons is that I don’t own any of it. The Lord has graciously allowed me to be a steward of all He has given to me. The question becomes, what kind of steward am I.
Since the beginning of my walk with Jesus I have had a yearning to serve in ministry. Early on I went to school at a Christian college because I wanted to go into vocational ministry. The twist and turns of life, and probably a little of my own misdirection kept me from finishing college. I never did go into vocational ministry. That’s okay. God was revealing His plan for my life. He was shaping and molding into his perfect vessel.
When your plan doesn’t work out, rest in His will. Let the Lord work the clay that is you and form it into the perfect vessel that will bring glory to Him.
I chose the picture above for this post because it was directly part of me using my talents for ministry. When I lived in California I was the Website manager for my church, Lincoln Presbyterian. This came after retiring from working in Website development. Before that, I taught myself the basics of coding. I wasn’t waking up every day thinking how great it was that I was being prepared for future ministry. Neither did I take up photography thinking I would use it in ministry some day. It was just something I did. Something that I developed a talent for.
When I am asked what it takes to “get better at photography,” my answer is always the same. Shoot every day. It doesn’t matter what you take pictures of. What matters is that you develop your craft by practicing. Practice every day. That goes for anything. If you want to get good at anything you need to spend time doing it; not sitting at a computer writing about it.
Those talents are still being developed. They are not always used for ministry, but I do seek for ways that they can be. I use photography to bring glory to God. At least I hope I do. That is one of the reasons I concentrate on nature and landscapes. I use my technology talents at my church to help with their Website. Combined, technology and photography, allows me to create for others for the greater good. At least, that is my goal and desire.
Moses spent forty years in obscurity on the back side of the desert as God prepared him to release Israel from bondage. You may not have as grand a responsibility as Moses, but that’s not the point. God was molding Moses, developing his character and talents. It is particularly interesting that Moses had already developed into a leader as a member of Pharaoh’s court, but He was placed in obscurity until God was ready to use him to deliver Israel from bondage.
Using the gifts God gave me was something I always wanted to do. Developing those talents by working in a cube coding pages, and practicing photography was His way of preparing me for the next step; giving those talents to Him to use as He willed. This didn’t mean they couldn’t be used for business or as a creative outlet. It simply meant that the talents He was developing were available when he called.
So I prayed and asked Him to reveal to me how I could give back to Him and use the talents. As we see in the case of Moses, it doesn’t necessarily happen overnight. It could, it just isn’t the norm. In my case it was over many years. Be patient. When you are ready, and more importantly, when He is ready, you will get the call. Opportunities will arise, often in ways you don’t expect. Be ready.
Whatever talents, abilities, and gifts God has given to you, give back to him. How you do that is completely up to you, but keep in mind that whatever we say, whatever we do, it is to be done for His glory with thanksgiving.
These are three things I came up with for using your talents for ministry. There are certainly many more. If you have others you would like to share you can scroll to the comment section and keep the conversation going. You can also send my your thoughts in an email and sign up for updates.