Tuesday July 20th, 2010
Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries. But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men. He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more that you prophesied; for he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless indeed he interprets, that the church may receive edification.
-1 Corinthians 14:1-5
Yesterday a girl came to me at the end of VBS asking about how the Bible was written. She asked if God told them what to write and they just wrote it. I told her that they just wrote what Jesus said and did (referring to the gospels) and the epistles were letters written to different churches. They didn’t know they were writing the Bible, but God put it on other men’s hearts to put the Bible together years later. I didn’t spend much time on this because it wasn’t the heart of the question. She was hearing God and was wondering if she should write it down. My spirit was moved when she told me this and I recognized the voice as she described it, but I asked her to write it all down and show me. Today, at the end of VBS, she did. God is speaking to her. She has not read the whole Bible, but she was speaking out of Romans and Philippians and John and a 1st John and a few other books. The words weren’t verbatim, but the message was God’s message. We have a prophetess in our midsts!
I remember receiving the same gift when I came to the Lord, but I wasn’t 12 like this girl, I was 18. I was quoting scripture before I read scripture, and as I grew older and have grown in His Word, He still speaks through me, but now I have chapter and verse most of the time, and when I don’t, I still have His main message. I’m so excited for this girl. Not everyone can hear the voice of God so clearly. I get main ideas, but she gets word for word. (She doesn’t speak the way she writes what God says, and even though it’s simple enough for her to understand, it definitely isn’t her voice.)
So I exercised my gifts of encouragement and exhortation. I encouraged her to keep listening and exhorted her to write it all down. I gave her a journal to use and she said she would share with me what God says. God has shown me wonderful things. He has shown me the tribulation days, (weird locusts creatures and all) creation, the naming of the animals, and the baptism of Jesus, and as cool as those are, I’m super excited about what God is doing in our midsts through these children. I have a lot of spiritual gifts because I ask for them and I seek them in prayer. God grants them to me out of His goodness and it has nothing to do with my abilities to do anything, but as much as I have, I feel like I have the least that God is willing to give. I believe that this little girl will receive a greater portion of the gift of prophesy than I have received and I’m not jealous at all. I am excited for her and I hope to guide her in using it for the edification of the body of Christ.
It is good for us to want the spiritual gifts, but it would be wrong to use them to draw attention to ourselves. I do speak in tongues, but if you’ve ever heard me do it, then I have been careless with that gift. It is for my edification. When I’m around others, it is better to use the gift of prophesy or encouragement or exhortation or teaching. I’ve asked for all these gifts individually. I think we miss out by not asking for these gifts. I think we are too happy with too little, as if the best God could do was to remove adversity from our lives. In fact, that’s the one thing that we ask of God that hinders His work. Without adversity, we do not strive to get closer to God. We get stuck in a routine and we don’t ask God for help anymore because we just believe that everything will just work out the way it did yesterday. But if everyday brought new troubles, then we would be praying everyday for God’s will to be done in our lives. Pray for the gifts, Wanda. God want’s to give them to you. His Holy Spirit gives liberally as He sees fit. I can tell you that the more you are surrendered to the will of God, the more He will use you. And as He uses you, He will give you the Spiritual gifts needed to complete the tasks that He has assigned. What’s stopping you? Is it fear? Is it comfort? These are false gods that Christians commit idolatry with. Put off fear and leave comfort behind. God is faithful and the road is bumpy, but it’s worth it.