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How Do I Figure Out My Spiritual Gifts?

4 practical steps to help you discover what God has gifted you to do.

by Lindsay Tully

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 4:10

This month, we’ve been memorizing 1 Peter 4:10 and talking about the spiritual gifts God gives every believer in Jesus. If you missed the first two posts, Living for Others in a Selfish World and Feeling Inadequate in Your Gifts?, be sure to check them out! 

Do you know what your spiritual gifts are? We’ve been talking about the why behind these gifts (given by God for the good of others to bring glory to his name), but how do you know what yours might be?

Here are some suggestions to help you start to answer this important question. This list is by no means exhaustive, but we hope it will help you as you seek to walk with Jesus, using the gifts God has given you to serve others and point them to the goodness of God.

  1. Ask God to help you see how he has gifted you. This might seem like the Sunday School answer, but it’s nevertheless foundational. Spend time with the Lord through prayer and reading his Word. We know that these gifts are from God, so start with him! Ask the Holy Spirit to help you discern how you can be serving others and bringing glory to God in your everyday life. Dig into what the Bible has to say about spiritual gifts. Romans 12:3–8 and 1 Corinthians 12:1–31 are two helpful places to get started. 
  2. Talk to your pastor. There are differing opinions on matters related to spiritual gifts, and your pastor or elders will be able to help you understand what your particular church believes about this topic. He can also help you think through some practical ways you can serve your local church with the gifts God has entrusted to you.
  3. Talk to mature Christian friends. After you’ve talked to your pastor, find some trusted Christian friends who know you well. They have likely already observed how the Lord is at work in your life in ways that might be difficult for you to see. Encourage one another to move beyond just identifying what your gifts are to living them out in your everyday lives.
  4. Find good resources. There are many good books and different spiritual gifts assessment quizzes you can take online. One popular one you could check out is from CRU. Let me encourage you to work through these steps in order—while a quiz might feel fun and easy, I think spending time first with the Lord and then with other believers will be most fruitful.

Before you dive in, here a couple of reminders:

  1. Spiritual gifts are from God and for others. The Spirit empowers us with gifts not primarily to make us look or feel good, but to point our own hearts and others to God as we bring him glory. Oh how quickly a desire for my own accolades and praise can sneak in, even when I start out with the reminder that it’s not about me, which is why I need this reminder often.
  2. God gives different gifts to different people. Just like other areas in life, it can be easy to feel jealous or wish our gifting looked more like someone else’s. This is where we can return to the truth of God’s Word to help us remember who the gifts are from and who they are for. God, in his infinite kindness and wisdom, has gifted you specifically with exactly what he intended, and he will continue to equip you as you serve those around you.

Here is what I’m praying for you, reader:

“Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” — Hebrews 13:20–21

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Lindsay Tully

Lindsay Tully serves as Editor and Writer for Dwell Differently. She lives in Illinois with her husband and 3 kids.

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