October 22 - Gift and Grace
Timothy, as Paul’s beloved child in the Lord, had sincere faith that was passed down from his grandmother Lois and his mother Eunice. This sincere faith is the foundation on which to build his life. As God’s servant, Timothy must know about the gift of the Holy Spirit as well as God’s grace that was operating in his life. Both gift and grace are important for anyone who wants to serve God.
First of all, we must know that the Holy Spirit has given us His gifts. Timothy received his spiritual gift through the laying on of Paul’s hands. In the first epistle, Paul also reminded Timothy of the gifts he received when the eldership laid hands on him with accompanying signs and prophecy. What was given to him had become his, it was inside of him or dwelling in him. All he needed to do was to fan it into flame instead of letting it sit idly inside.
The gifts of God are for us to use, to exercise or they would become like just a spark of fire inside. Through repeated use and exercise, the gifts may turn stronger and stronger, from a mere spark to a full flame. It is not to explore one’s inner potential, but it is the deposit of God inside of us. By such exercise, we do not make ourselves better but we let God do His will through us by His power and presence. When we see the Holy Spirit operate in our lives, performing miracles and wonders, we should not be proud for it has nothing to do with our own power. We must use the gifts of the Holy Spirit or we are doing God’s ministry by our own power.
While serving God, we must bear in mind and constantly ask for God’s grace. His grace is an unmerited favor or gift that God bestows on us. God has given us, like He had given to Timothy, not a spirit of fear but a spirit of power, love and self-control. All these qualities are grace from God and not our own achievements. With that, we are not afraid to suffer for the cause of Christ while preaching the gospel by the power of God. We rely on God’s grace and not our own works. We know what we have believed and that He can guard us until that Day. God’s purpose in us is accompanied by His grace to us.
Both the gifts and the fruit of the Holy Spirit are in our lives. His gifts offers us power to do His bidding while His fruit in our lives brings us into the position of a receiver of His grace. The more we rely on Him, the more we receive His gifts and grace. This is the way that all believers should operate. We are called to do His will with the resources He has provided for us.
Do you operate by His gifts and by His grace? Stop being a worker but a receiver of His gift and grace now.
Ps 119:1-8 Jer 39:1-41:18 2 Tim 1:1-18 Prov 26:1-2