I’d like to think I rely on faith all the time. But the reality is sometimes I do and sometimes I don’t. Here are some examples.
Rely on the Spirit
At church last Sunday, a woman I’ve worked with many times said, “I read everything you write. Your piece in the Huffington Post really spoke to me. I don’t know how I got so lucky to be around such smart people.” I smiled and preened a little.
Then I stepped back emotionally and said, “Well, you know, of course, I didn’t write that.” Her face showed surprise so I explained. “I got up one morning, and the Spirit guided me.” That was the rough draft, and there were several drafts thereafter with structural and line item changes. But she understood because she’s experienced the Spirit’s guidance, too.
Rely on my gifts
We all have a purpose in life, even in the third or fourth stages of life, and we’re all given gifts to accomplish them. Some are given many gifts, some only one.
Recently, our church asked the membership to fill out a Spiritual Gifts inventory. I’ve taken surveys like this previously, and the results are always the same: generosity, service, helping, and both kinds of leadership. Quite honestly, my gifts aren’t off-the-charts extraordinary. Many people are far more gifted in each of these areas. My gifts function more like a skill set that I can draw upon in combination.
In that regard, I’m returning to teaching again this fall, this time Sunday School. I’m looking forward to being “back in the saddle again” after more than a decade away from my profession. I’m a better person when using my gifts for the benefit of others.
Rely on God’s grace and mercy
Two weeks ago, Keith and I had a less-than-perfect visit with my daughter and our granddaughter, and the failures were my fault because I relied on myself. Although I’ve been making progress with dog management, I failed in that regard during their visit, leading to failures in my relationship with Keith and hospitality to our guests. Note: I do not have the gift of hospitality—my daughter is an amazingly gifted hostess—and I often forget to pray for help.
Worse, when I fail, I often burden others with self-pity and complaining. Until I step back emotionally and fall into God’s grace and mercy. Then, with the Spirit’s guidance and support from Keith and my sisters in Christ, I can use my gifts to problem solve.
While praying the Serenity Prayer: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
Linkup with Five Minute Friday: https://fiveminutefriday.com/2023/09/07/fmf-writing-prompt-link-up-rely/