My understanding of spiritual gifts really has not been expanded, as I have done lots of work on the Natural Church Development (NCD) in the past and also the 3 passages of the body of Christ in the Pauline corpus and the gifts listed there.
I did love the discussion we had about tongues and interpretation. The understanding of vertical vs. horizontal tongues. How one can pray in tongues to God and that is vertical. We can say things even we do not understand but that is the Holy Spirit speaking through us in “sighs too deep for words… (Romans 8:26). We pray in a way that gets our thoughts to God even when we do not understand. I still believe that if one is using tongues horizontally or between people there needs to be interpretation as Paul says.
According to the Spiritual gifts assessment we took tonight in class (Spiritual Gifts Assessment Tool – Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) my top gifts are:
Artistry (Which I think is because the artistry questions to me were about my music ability – so I would say this is the one above.)
I love playing music in both worship and secular settings. It is always fun to play in a pit orchestra and get to know the other musicians and actors and have them get to know me as a person not associated with the church and then when we get to those moments when we talk about what we do for a living since none of us make enough playing to survive and I say I am a pastor, their jaws hit the floor because they have never met a pastor like me. A pastor who is real and genuine. I think if more of us lived our lives in the way we would be and did not worry about what others would think we would be honestly who God created us to be and we would lead more people to the understanding that God is love and loves everyone as they are.
Teaching was not necessarily a surprise for me, and I would say I teach in many different ways. One of the things I had a lot of fun doing was developing an online curriculum for confirmation. This was done over several years and I have used it in teaching confirmation in my call in Wisconsin. I also know other members of the writing team still use it as well as other pastors around the country. It is a curriculum for multiple years and can be used for any age.
I would like to use my gifts for music more in my campus ministry setting but also am self-conscious about making it all about me and having the focus be on just me. This is not my ministry but a ministry I get to serve. I want the ministry to flourish and thrive in a way that will allow it to exist long after I am the called leader here.
So is not using our spiritual gifts a spiritual gift? Is there a time when using something is more self-fulfilling than fulfilling the will of God and how do we discern that and know when we are actually doing the will of God?