God’s purpose for us is so precious, don’t you think? Have you ever known someone who is 100% on the path of God’s will for their life? Their joy is remarkable! Why? When we choose to be submissive and obedient to God’s will for our life we contribute to the body of Christ and that eternal significance has an impact on us. Each of us is made in his workmanship and created to do works that he prepared for us. When we start these works in life depends on how obedient we are to God’s will for us.
I already see so many of Anya’s spiritual gifts and how she has the potential to do great works for the kingdom and it is my job to nurture those gifts. The nurturing process of our spiritual gifts begins very young. The enemy is always on the prowl trying to hold us back from God’s plans and all too often he delays us by his many schemes. Think about if as parents and as a community we were intentional about revealing, nurturing and encouraging these gifts in our children. I’m not just speaking about our own children, but other children we encounter.
How do we recognize and nurture these gifts in our children?
- Be Present and Aware: We can’t see our children’s spiritual gifts if our nose is stuck in the phone or on Facebook. We should intentionally and deliberately be watching and observing where their gifts lie. What do they enjoy doing? Where do they shine when serving? When we are present and in the moment with them we learn who they are and what abilities and gifts they have to share.
- Talk to the Them About Being Made in God’s Workmanship:Unfortunately, many people view their worth as something earned instead of something that IS. Instilling in our children that they’re made in the image of God and that they are carefully woven together to do his works is invaluable to their self-esteem and confidence. When children know that their worth is from God and that they have a high calling at an early age we start closing those doors the enemy wants to slip in. I can’t stress how important it is to remind our children of their unique purpose in God’s plan.
- Provide Opportunities: Scripture tells us we should take advantage of every opportunity. When we are aware of our children’s gifts we should seek opportunities for them that will encourage and allow them to experience their gifts. For example, my daughter enjoys teaching younger children, so some gracious bible study teachers at church have allowed her to assist them in class with the 4 and 5 year olds. These women are providing her an opportunity to use her gift. Opportunities are avenues for our children to explore and utilize their gifts, which gets them excited!
- Encourage Them with Words: Our words to our children are incredibly powerful and we have to use them responsibly. Make it a point every day to encourage your children. Slip them little notes in their lunchboxes, pray over them and however you can find a way to encourage that resonates with them, do it! Encourage other kids as well! When you see a gift in your friend’s child do what you can to uplift them as well.
- Seek out Mentors: Our children more than ever are in need of mentors. Seek out mentors who have similar spiritual gifts as your children to guide them, pray for them, and encourage them along the way. Those sweet teachers at our church are becoming mentors to my daughter and that influence is invaluable. Be a mentor yourself! Seek out children who you can mentor and serve in a way that will motivate them to do God’s will for their lives.
- Be an Example: Are you taking advantage of your gifts? How do you serve? Are you living on purpose? Being an example to our children is crucial. Let them see the joy that comes from using their spiritual gifts through your example. Never devalue your own gifts, whatever they are, they are instrumental in the work of Christ and are valuable. Let your children see you not just talking, but walking the walk.
Never underestimate your children’s spiritual gifts and what they can evolve into when they are nurtured and encouraged. Start young and build them up! Reach out to other children and serve as the body of Christ to God’s most precious gift to us.