The other day I was reading an interview by world renown designer Diane von Furstenberg with wildlife defender, Dr. Jane Goodall. She was asking Dr. Goodall about her lifelong work at the forefront of animal rights and climate change–a career that spans more than fifty years. Von Furstenberg asks the great scientist about where she finds her strength:
“I was given two special gifts: a strong constitution and the ability to communicate. I try to use these talents effectively in a world where so much is wrong.” Every day, this is what drives Dr. Goodall–to make the world a better place for animals and to reduce the effects of climate change on the planet.
It got me thinking about God and his Kingdom, so I started myself with this prompt:
I began to make a list.
What has God gifted me the ability to do?
This summer I finally embraced that God has created me to be a writer. I have now committed to it as more than a diversion or hobby. (Praise God, I even get paid to write at this point! It’s beyond my wildest dreams!)
God has gifted me with the ability to communicate (particularly in the written form for now), the desire to teach, and an eye for details. All three I use every week, possibly every day, in the ministry God has given me as Christ follower, wife, mother, poodle/chicken caregiver and Church Girl.
Why does God do this? Why does He give gifts?
(Click HERE to learn more about Spiritual Gifts)
How are we to use these things the Lord has placed inside of us?
(Click HERE to find out)
There was a second question I had to answer:
Dr. Goodall specifies using her talents “effectively” because there are a lot of ways we can use our talents, and “ineffectively” is certainly one way we could use them. I have wasted and squandered a lot of what God has given me. Am I the only one? How about you?
Here’s another thing: How do we measure effectiveness? Something to consider.
Now, there are a ton of ways someone could finish this sentence–“…to be wealthy…to be powerful and influential…to make my life easy…to have lots of friends…” The list is endless.
Thankfully, my answer was easy and very clear:
That’s it. Simple. Point people to Jesus, using all the gifts and talents at our disposal that God has given us, in all the circumstances and places and with all the faces of the people He places in front of us. Legit? Amen.
Why did I begin a blog? ‘Cause, like the world needs one more blogger on the Internet adding to the noise that’s out there, right?
I began this blog because I felt an overwhelming need to have all my written work in one place instead of scattered across social media. FB, InstaG, Twitter–it was all over the place. Additionally, my writing was inconsistent; sometimes months would go by without me actually sitting down at my computer to create what He was showing me.
God began pressing into my heart, giving me a direction to align my writing into a theme–“Jesus in Everything.” This keeps me on task within His theme and to remind me to look for Him each and every day.
Finally, there was a yawning void that had been growing inside me: I wanted to show or teach people that “…by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:16-17)
And so I began; I just started writing, researching and figuring out how to do a blog. I had written a short Bible study and have continued to help outline and research for sermon series.
Reasoning with myself, I asked: How hard could starting a blog be? Turns out, setting up and maintaining an online blog is a challenge when you’re my age! All that technology…ack! All I want to do is write.
There have been challenges. There are ups and downs as a writer and I’ve had moments of pure spiritual bliss right along with being put into tears. I have many fears and doubts. As my kids say, The struggle is real. But I must persevere if it is truly my calling.
Is it worth it to strive with everything I have toward Jesus, to struggle in the energy of the Spirit? Absolutely.
“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:12-14)
While Dr. Jane Goodall is changing the world for now, I hope and pray that I have a part with Jesus in changing people not just for the here and now, but for all eternity.
What gifts or talents has God placed inside of you? How are you using them? How are you pointing people to Jesus? We would love to hear from you in the COMMENTS below, or you can shoot me an email, too!