My friend Shauna - you know her, right? (she has this amazing blog) - had an incredible mother. I never got to meet her, but I've learned things from her nonetheless. Her daughter has carried on so much of her beauty.
A story about Cindie I may never forget is how when faced with her limitations, she'd gracefully state, "Well, I have many other fine qualities." I imagine she'd smile at the same time, fully unphased by her shortcomings, and fully satisfied by the gifts God had given her.
I, on the other hand, don't love to linger over my shortcomings. I'd rather focus on my strengths, quietly ashamed of that which I am not, and secretly wishing my weaknesses would just disappear.
So when I heard that Cindie would have such an attitude - one characterized by a deep understanding of grace - something in me craved it. Her example opened my eyes and made it seem plausible that perhaps I may be able to free myself from the self-inflicted pressure to be great at everything.
Now that I think about it, I don't think I'd previously realized what a life of striving I'd been living.
Recently, I took an online spiritual gifts test. You answer questions for a few minutes, and then it tells you what you are most likely gifted in (according to the motivational gifts listed in Romans 12), and by default, that which you are not. I have to ask myself, Do I spend more time thanking God for the incredible gifts He's given me in order to be effective for His kingdom, or do I spend more time staring at the figures that say I AM NOT gifted in many others? It is a real dilemma for me some days.
So today, as we could all use some grace for ourselves this Thursday, can we try something together?
In the comments, I'm going to share with you my few gifts, and the few I certainly do not have, based on that gifts test. I'll be practicing Cindie's motto as I type the weaknesses: "I have many other fine qualities!" And through grace, I'll be thanking God for my strengths as well as my weaknesses, because those are the areas in which His power can especially shine. Amen?
If you have a few minutes, go here and take the test yourself. (It's short) Then, share your results with us in a comment. It will give you percentages for each of seven gifts. The highest couple are your spiritual gifts - strengths given to you by God himself for serving and loving the world. And for that which you are NOT, we'll know you have many other fine qualities!
(I'm hoping you have a chance to play along; since blogging sometimes feels like I'm talking AT you, I like to find ways to get to know YOU better. And don't miss the chance to read the analysis of each gift below the results. It's certainly helped me understand who God made me to be.)
Labels: grace on a thursday