Monday, April 1, 2013
Banana Bread and Spiritual Gifts ...
"Oh Yeah!" Kregg smiles at me. Yes, he's smiling( ... and you'll understand why soon).
We're all in our morning routine. Jerry's already gone for work. Now the rest of us are getting ready for school and work. take the dog out, eat breakfast. Grab back packs, lap tops ... the lunch box James almost forgot. Kregg runs to his room and gets a small stuffed animal to 'sneak' into his bag. He thinks I don't see him, but I do.
Kregg grabs the bananas, "Can we take 'em now, Mama?"
"No, Kregg." I'm grabbing my purse and car keys. "We don't have time this morning."
He slumps his shoulders and pouts. He's good at this. Big brown eyes and down turned mouth. "It'll only take a minute. You can take 'em to Hanker's while Grandma takes us to school." Hanker is the nickname my boys have for my sister, Mary. But, that's a story for another day.
"No, I'm sorry. I don't have time." I kiss his forehead. "I'll take them later."
This conversation would make no sense to anyone outside our family. But, for anyone close to us ... you know Hanker makes the best banana bread. If you've got bananas that are beyond the stage of enjoying as a simple snack ... take them to Hanker. She turns them into something yummy. Sometimes, she adds chocolate chips. For our family, she leaves out the nuts (because I really don't like them much, I'll eat them ... but if I get the choice, I'll have it without). The loaves are just the right size, slice it ... put a little butter on it and give me a cup of coffee or a glass of milk ... good snack. In fact, my kids fight over it. Yes, it's that good.
I've offered to make it for my boys. That always turns into looks of ... "How do we tell Mom we would rather have Hanker make it without hurting her feelings?" You see, all the men in my house have tasted my attempts at baking (and there have been many) and they know, it's just not my area of expertise. I have tried, because I want to be the one who does that well ... who puts the smiles on my boys faces when they eat that snack. I have always been the type of person/mom who wants to do it all and be it all for everyone under my roof.
That's the human in me ... in a lot of us. We want to be gifted in all areas of life. But, that's not how it works. God gives each of us talents or gifts. I'm talking about spiritual gifts. We don't get to pick our gifts. He picks them. They are part of us from the moment of conception. From the time of our birth, God puts us through events (whether those events be trials or triumphs) to strengthen those gifts ... to bring those gifts out of our soul where He planted them and into the world. For us to share. That's why He gave us those gifts ... to share them and minister to others. The problem is, sometimes we aren't content with the gifts He gave us. We decide there are much better gifts out there and we want them. So, we set out on a mission to get those gifts. All the while, we're depriving others the joy of being blessed by our real gifts. Our God given gifts. And, we're depriving God of the pleasure He has in seeing us use our gifts to further His kingdom.
Just like my attempts at baking banana bread. In all the effort I put into trying to do what my sister can do ... I took time away from what I already do well. And, at the same time, I totally depressed myself. Because I failed. I just need to be ... me ... the me God created. Not the me I somehow feel would be better.
Take time today to be you. Because you were made exactly how God wanted you.
If you've never taken a journey through scripture to find out what your spiritual gifts are ... Take time to read through 1 Corinthians and Ephesians. These books of the bible are filled with insights on Spiritual Gifts.
1 Corinthians 12:11 "But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills."
1 Corinthians 12:18 "But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased."