No two persons are alike. Each of us is a unique person. We are quite aware of this reality. This is why customization and personalization are popular. Instead of having one kind of menu, restaurants come up with all kinds of menu. Something for everybody. Everyone has different taste, and they are important. Just take a look at phone cases today. They come in myriad colors and motifs. When you want to buy a case for your phone, you are given a choice of many colors. Even better, you can customize the color and picture for your case.
The Bible, however, teaches us that differences are the gifts from God. The church is enriched by differences that work together for God’s purpose. Instead of seeing differences as an excuse to focus on self-preferences, we need to make sure that our differences work together for the well-being of God’s church.
The world sees differences in terms of self-serving and self-aggrandizing goals. It starts from self and ends in self. Self is everything, and there is nothing higher than self. Christians see it differently. It starts with God who grants different gifts to His children, and it ends with God’s glory through the building of His church using those various gifts.
When Christ went up to heaven, He sat there and began to give gifts to His church (Ephesians 4:7-13). He gave some to be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers to build the body of Christ. In addition, He gives every believer spiritual gifts to build the body. Those gifts are intended for building and not for comparison, competition, or even worse, bragging.
It is important to remember that all of us are the members of His body, the church. We are together for a purpose: each of us should exercise our gifts for the building of the body of Christ. In the end, it is not about us but about Christ and His glory. The less we think about ourselves, the more the world will see the glory of Christ. When we exercise our gifts, we must do it with love and humility. It is not our glory because it is not our ability. It is gifts from God, and, therefore, must be given back to God in the form of service and ministry to His church.
Do not underestimate ourselves. God has given each of us gifts. Let us exercise them with love and humility for the well-being and growth of His church. When those gifts are used for His kingdom, they are investments. The return is abundance and eternal. Nothing dedicated to God will be wasted. God will remember every prayer, ministry, dedication, tear, and sweat that we devote to His kingdom. Stand firm in Christ. Our labor in Christ is not in vain.