The Holy Spirit does not give us spiritual gifts for us to shout to the world, “Look at me!” The Holy Spirit is not “flashy” nor does He believe in “showing off.” Instead, the Holy Spirit gives us the gifts that we need at any given time to help build up the Body of Christ.
The Holy Spirit leaves it up to us to decide whether or not we will use the gifts that we are given and how we will use those gifts. Spiritual discernment is a necessary part of our decision-making process. For some, the decision to use a given gift or not is not a difficult choice. We use our gifts—sometimes without conscious thought—because they are so much a part of who we are. But we must all be constantly on guard that we use our gifts for God’s glory and not our own. It is not about us; we are the vessels of clay which indicates our frailty and limitations. God’s love needs to be poured out upon the earth and we can be a part of that outpouring by following the promptings of the Holy Spirit in our lives. However, when we allow our spiritual gifts to focus a spotlight on ourselves, we are no longer working to build up the Body of Christ.
One of God’s greatest gifts to us is our free will. We can choose if we do and how we do it and even why we do something. The if, how, when, and why matter to God. It was because God loved us, that He sent His Only Son. It was how Jesus died and rose again that we have Salvation. And, finally, the Holy Spirit was sent because the love of God never stops—He always wants to help us, to guide us, to comfort us, and to express the love of God continually to us and to/for others.
The if, how, when, and why matter to God. Let us pray that they always matter to us as well.