Your Gift Is a Platform for God’s Glory

“Look at all that beauty!” I thought to myself as I drove by the fallow winter field.

Tall, gangly sunflowers, slightly stooped, and in all likelihood stripped bare by hungrily harvesting chipmunks, stood in a huddled threesome at each corner of a fenced-off garden spot.  I love sunflowers in all their seasons, but it would never have occurred to me to place them so beautifully that even in death they were decorative.

I have made peace with my ineptitude for making beauty happen with flowers.  That doesn’t mean I don’t plant them all over the place and then cheer as they grow — I’ve learned to delight in their wild elegance and vivid colors.  However, I have found that my bouquets tend to be lackluster and awkward affairs which I’ve started calling “poke-ays” because they look as if I just poked the flowers into the vase.  (Oddly enough, my artistic friends say that’s all they do too, but with very different results.)

There was a time when this really irritated me, but these days, I’m feeling blessed rather than threatened by my gifted sisters in Christ who arrange flowers and curate spaces of beauty in their homes and in our church.  Rather than feeling diminished by their abilities, I’m enhanced  — and, best of all, I’m invited into the truth of I Peter 4:11:

“If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever.”

Any spiritual gift or ability is evidence of the work of Christ in the believer, and, when put on display, it becomes a platform for God’s glory.  Encouraged by the successful and glorious efforts of my friends, I spend summer and fall hauling in armloads of whatever’s growing in my garden or whatever I find that’s showcasing the work of God’s hand in the fields behind my house.  Then I labor over my “poke-ays” without fear of failure or humiliation.  After all, the “magnificently varied grace of God” (v. 10) is being put on display in other ways in my life.  It’s God’s  job to distribute the gifts — it’s our job to use them.

Meanwhile, my talented sisters in Christ glorify God in ways that might not have occurred to me if left to myself:

  • The patient fortitude of my friend who ministers to kids in an after school Bible club
  • The loving heart of helpfulness that motivates a dear wife to care for her blind husband and his mother
  • The holy boldness of the woman who witnesses to the unsuspecting delivery drivers who come to her home and who gives gifts of food to a struggling clerk she meets in passing at a drug store
  • Our beautiful pastor’s wife who transforms flower, butter, eggs and sugar into magnificent cakes that enhance celebration and delight the honored guest
  • The sweet friend who came racing into church at the last minute with just the right bow for the flower arrangement on the piano
In this rainbow of varied expressions, I hear the words of Peter to first-century believers (who, incidentally, were living in an age of intense persecution):  “As each on has received a gift, minister it to one another.”  There is so much that needs to be done, and it’s all kingdom work!  I certainly am not gifted to do it all, but God has equipped the Body with abundance — not for the exaltation of the one with the gift, but for the glory of the Giver and the benefit of the church.
This richness makes my heart long for the day when God’s grace will be put on display for all to see in His heavenly home, for we will all gather around the table where the Lamb Himself will preside over the feast.
Are there any volunteers to make the bouquets?



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18 thoughts on “Your Gift Is a Platform for God’s Glory”

  1. I don’t remember how I found your blog, but I’m glad I did. I have had a life long struggle with jealousy, and just in the past few years I have begun to let my heart appreciate the gifts that others have, and in that, I can enjoy my own gifts. Your entry today, put this whole thing into words that I can rest on. Your words are like a sweet bouquet… Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You have just made my day! I agree with you: it is an act of pure grace to be able to thank God for the gifting of another person! Especially if it’s a gift that you would like to be able to exercise as well!


  2. Thank you Michele for this reminder. We are uniquely gifted for His glory… And it is God that works all that’s good in us as He wills for His glory.Heb13:20,21 has been my meditation today. Your words are its perfect compliment. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sunflowers are one of my favorites, even when they droop. I think I make a lot of poke-ays, too. But they are still pretty and they still brighten up the room, just like your words and the reminder to embrace the gifts in others…and ourselves. 🙂

    Blessings Michele!


  4. Thank you for linking this post up this week at The Loft.

    Some good thoughts here – “It’s God’s job to distribute the gifts — it’s our job to use them.” So true!

    I also love that you shared Peter’s verse that reminds us to have our gifts point to Him for His glory.

    Lastly, gotta chuckle at the “poke-ays”! That kind of describes my flower arranging abilities, too.


  5. Poke-ays….that is hysterical. I love it and I love how you celebrate the gifting of others. You are such a blessing, Michele. Thank you for reminding me to celebrate other people’s gifting and use my own to God’s glory.


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