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This past week was difficult, to say the least. I attended two funerals and had to make the excruciating decision to put down our oldest cat. Actually, now that I stop and think about it, this entire year has been difficult, in regards to dealing with (or not dealing with) death.
It seems like, every time I turn around, someone close to me knows of someone who has passed. And now recently, people I know have passed. It never matters how they passed, whether it was expected or not, it’s always heartbreakingly painful. There are never any words to say to ease the pain of the ones closest to the one who passed.
Not to long ago, a dear sweet friend from church went into the ICU. It didn’t look good. I desperately wanted to go visit and I knew I should. Many times I told my husband I was going the next time he went. Then as he was getting ready to head that way, I told him I couldn’t. I would say, “maybe next time”. Oh, how I wished I were as strong as my husband. I wish God had gifted me with the ability to comfort others in times of deep sorrow. Instead, I can cry uncontrollably at any random sad thought. I can probably go through a box of tissue faster than anyone!
If I went to the hospital, I wanted to be helpful and supportive of the family. I knew I couldn’t be helpful to anyone if I was a blubbering mess. You see, every time I would think of my friend in the hospital and what she was going through, I would start crying hysterically. I believed my friend would soon be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, but I couldn’t handle seeing what she was going through until that time came.
Instead of going and being there with the family, I chose to stay home and lift up my sorrows in prayer and cry out to God. I continually asked God to enable the doctors and nurses to heal her, and if that wasn’t His will for her, then I asked Him to take her home, to Him, sooner rather than later, so she wouldn’t suffer.
I did the same when it came time to take our cat to the vet to have her put down. I knew I would be an absolute basket case, so I told my husband I couldn’t go. Thankfully, his sister went with him so he wasn’t alone. While they were gone, I again lifted my sorrow up to God. I prayed that they be comforted as they sat with Shelby (our cat) as she took her last breath. I prayed for Shelby to go peacefully, without complications.
Sometimes I feel embarrassed that I can’t control myself and hold back the tears. I get upset that I can’t be more helpful to others in their time of loss. As I was whining to God about not being as strong as my husband in times of sorrow, He reminded me He made us each differently. We each have a different gift and something different to do with those gifts. We cannot all have the same gifts. I must only be concerned with the gifts God has given me and that I am using them in a way that is glorifying to Him.
For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your 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, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully. ~ Romans 12:3-8
I knew this scripture. I’ve heard it in Sunday morning sermons and studied it in BSF. So why was I having such a hard time? I wasn’t acting as if I believed it were true.
My prayer for us today ~ Father God, thank you for gifting us with different abilities so we may be helpful to others in different and unique ways. I pray for your guidance as we seek you and your will for using these gifts, Amen