There is a list of spiritual gifts given in Romans 12.
Rom 12:3-8 For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. (4) For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, (5) so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. (6) Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; (7) if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; (8) the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.
Do you see them?
I have heard helpful teaching that every believer has at least one of these basic gifts. They are motivational gifts – in other words they are the primary gift/bent of a person. They are spiritual “love languages.” They are our default mode when we want to express love to others.
It’s fun to try to plug people into one of these categories. If you are careful and accurate in your observations sometimes you can anticipate what people will do and how they will respond in a given situation based on their spiritual “bent.” You want to know your wife’s spiritual disposition. You want to know how each of your children are “wired.” It’s helpful to know what your parent’s motivational gifts are.
Of all the people I know my Dad is the hardest one to figure out. He has a keen sense of right and wrong. (Prophet) He loves to meet basic needs behind the scenes. (Server) He is a student with four earned degrees who has logged enough academic hours for two professions, education and the clergy. (Teacher) He is one of the most consistently encouraging men I have ever known. (Exhorter) His is sacrificial and generous. (Giver) He is organized and methodical (Ruler), and he is very merciful and tenderhearted. He has no trouble weeping with those who weep. (Mercy)
My brother and I conferred about this earlier this evening and we came to the agreement that the chink in his spiritual gift armor might be that he leans more to the mercy than to the prophet, but it is remarkable how each of these qualities have been obvious in his life for as long as we can remember.
On Father’s Day I was up north out of cell phone range. By the time I drove into range my battery was dead. I prayed that my Dad would understand and we enjoyed a good, long talk on Monday as soon as I drove into range. Here is my public tribute to Dad, who is a Spirit-filled man. How many men do you know that you cannot tell their spiritual gift because they seem to have them all?
Riverfront Character Inn
June 21, 2006