Gifts: Way better than any that Santa's given.

"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully." --Romans 12:6-8.

There have definitely been times in my life where I wished I had a talent or attribute that someone else had and I obviously lacked: intelligence, family, appearance, musical abilities, etc. but if I had any of those things that I wished I had, would I be the person that God wants me to be? Most likely not. The way He's made me is just the way He likes it. In fact, when we all were created, He not only said we were good, but He said we were VERY good on the day He created us (Genesis 1:31). When we were being knitted in our wombs, God knew us --who we would become-- and what we would accomplish in our lives (Jeremiah 1:5).

I know I'm disappointed by what I don't have (I have a 3.4-something GPA in college, my family has its faults, etc.), but should I be? These things that God has used to shape me into who I am today were especially chosen because He has a far greater plan than I could ever see. We also need to take into account that we are created in God's image. We wouldn't criticize God, right? So why would we do it to ourselves? When we insult ourselves and put our own self worth down, we're also hurting God.

In the Ten Commandments, too, God tells Moses that "you should not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor" (Exodus 23:17, emphasis added). That includes what makes them who they are.

Rather than mourning over what we do not have (or who we aren't), we ought to praise the Lord for what we do have even though it's not what Joe Schmoe has when it comes to talents. God has gifted us with the talents, passions, and habits to shape us into who He wants us to be. We can't argue with that. In time, when we do figure out the gifts that God has blessed us with, don't let them go to waste. Strengthen them, share them; use them for the glory of God.

Personally, I have had many compliments about how I have great talent in writing. I journal and blog (obviously) hoping that I can get better at what one of my passions are. As a wanna-be environmental biologist, I hope to research and get a better understanding of God's creation and write about it, hopefully someday working with Answers in Genesis, telling others about how great and powerful our Lord is and showcase all that He is capable of creating and does create everyday. It's all so beautiful!

What are your passions? What are your talents? What gifts has God gifted you with? Don't say nothing! Work on using what makes you YOU to glorify God, the One who gave it all to you. You are who you are today because of Him, and He has a plan for you.

God bless!

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