On Sunday afternoon I sat around my kitchen table with a group of twentysomethings from my church. We talked about life after college and my wife and I shared bits of our story.
At one point a girl named Stephanie interrupted me and said, “This is really encouraging because you’re sitting with a table full of dreamers.”
I believe God made us to be dreamers, possibility people, visionaries. He gave us the gift of imagination for the good of this world. And everyday people like you and me have good ideas that if they came true would shape the future.
The King & His Kingdom
What they don’t teach you in school is that God has a big and awesome purpose for your life, a dream for you that connects to his eternal plans. Just showing up and punching a clock is not why he created you. Hanging on until you make it to Friday or vacation or retirement is not the life that’s truly life. You were made by a King and saved to build a kingdom.
Out of all possible periods in history, the God of the universe chose this time and this place for you to live. You could have been born into the Victorian Era or Amazon Jungle or the Middle Ages, but you weren’t. You’re here now.
God has an assignment for your life, probably many assignments, to shine his light into the darkness. God wants to work in you and work through you. That’s why you’re still here and not in heaven already. You have come into the kingdom for such a time as this.
Find Your Part To Play
Finding your part to play in the kingdom of God is not optional, it’s essential. It’s not a special perk for a select few. No, you were hand-made by God for a purpose. Through Jesus you have been born again, forgiven from sin and freed from shame, in order to complete the good works which God has prepared for you Ephesians 2:10.
Scripture says each of us has received a gift 1 Peter 4:10. Our gifts differ according to the grace given to us Romans 12:6. But each of us has been given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good 1 Corinthians 12:7.
That means there are no extras in heaven’s army. You matter to God and to us. The unique spiritual gifting in your life is for our good.
3 Ways God Uses People
I have found that God’s giftings often fall into three types of roles. If you honestly evaluate yourself you could probably see yourself in one of them.
1. You speak. In the Old Testament these were the prophets. In the New Testament these are the apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. If you’re calling is to speak you study God’s word, exhort God’s people, and proclaim God’s truth. You witness to the lost and create opportunities to talk to people about Jesus.
2. You serve. In the Old Testament these were the priests, the singers, and the artists. In the New Testament these are the deacons. If you’re calling is to serve you come alongside people, execute plans, and make stuff happen. You may find that you love to pray, host, sing, organize or volunteer.
3. You lead. In the Old Testament these were kings. In the New Testament these are Gospel Patrons. If you’re calling is to lead you work hard, build strategies and systems, create resources, form partnerships, and give generously.
No gifting is best. It’s not a competition. And I’m not trying to box you in. But knowing how God made you will help you understand how he likely wants to use you. The goal is that as Jesus works through you to build his kingdom you will be happy and God will be glorified 1 Peter 4:11; Matthew 5:16.
So for my sake, for your sake, and for the sake of glorifying God in this generation, please move towards your gifting, calling, and dreams. Step past your fears and say, “Yes” to the next thing you are reasonably certain Jesus asks you to do. The ripple effects of your faith could be just the thing we’ve all been hoping and praying for.