November 9 – Motivational Gifts #4 – Exhortation

“As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children.” I Thessalonians 2:11

Exhorters are motivated to see people encouraged and strengthened. They are the FEET of the body and will go out of their way to bring peace, unity, and counsel to others. Usually good counselors, their words stimulate faith, and they have a God given ability to love people through difficult or negative circumstances.

Barnabas is the Bible character that typifies the gift of EXHORTATION. When the Church at Jerusalem doubted Saul’s conversion and ministry motives, it was Barnabas who came to his defense. (See Acts 9:27.) Barnabas personally took Saul to the apostles and testified on his behalf, convincing the others that Saul (later to be named Paul) could be trusted.

Exhorters are “people persons,” practical in their approach, usually patient and not quick to give up (Barnabas stayed with Paul a year).

If this gift fits your character, then exhort for the glory of God; but be careful not to neglect your own family or personal relationship with the Lord. “For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men ?for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.” Galatians 1:10. Always be sure to please God first!

PRAY: “Father, bestow unto me the ability to use my gifts to bring help and healing to Your body.   I will not forget my need for personal fellowship with You. Thank You for helping me to set proper priorities.”

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November 8 – Motivational Gifts #3 – Teaching

“And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” II Timothy 2:2

A person with a TEACHING gift is not necessarily a public speaker, but one that is motivated to search out and clarify truth. . . interested in accuracy, facts, details.

Luke’s Gospel writing is the longest. Written in painstaking detail, it describes conversations with names, dates, and cities in a systematic sequence unparalleled by other writers. Luke was a teacher.

Teachers are the EARS of the body. They are important to keeping the Church on the “straight and narrow.” Unmoved by feelings or the philosophies of men, they are sticklers for the “facts” and diligent students of the Word. Their ears are always awake to distinguish between truth and error.

If you have a teacher’s motivational gift, be careful not to be argumentative, proud, or critical. Know that you are a functional part of the body, but learn to appreciate and value others that do not appear to be as informed. Also, be careful that your over attention to study does not cause you to neglect the personal and practical needs of others, and, most importantly, be thankful to God for making you just the way you are.

PRAY: “God of all truth, lead me in the path of wisdom and understanding today so that I might apply the knowledge You have given in a manner that is useful to others. Thank You for Your Word. In Jesus’ Name, amen.”

“November 7 – Motivational Gifts #2 – Serving” is locked November 7 – Motivational Gifts #2 – Serving

“But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.” Luke 10:40

SERVING is a wonderful gift that some people are strongly motivated by in the body of Christ. They are the HANDS of the body. Motivated to serve others, they have an ability to recognize practical needs and enjoy serving rather than leading, doing rather than speaking.

Martha found joy in serving, even to the neglect of ministry to Jesus. Servers must be careful not to get their priorities out of line and not to allow the project to become more important than people or their service to God. (See Luke 10:38-42.)

Timothy served Paul like a son (See II Timothy 1:2.) In Acts 6:2, the disciples discovered the need for servers in the Church to tend to the many mechanical and administrative details.

If this is your special gift from God, serve with JOY. Your gift is much needed in the Church. Remember, God gave you this motivational gift, so do not forget to serve Him as well. Psalm 100:2 says, “Serve the Lord with gladness… “ Also, be an encouragement to the servers that you see at work around you.

PRAY: “Dear heavenly Father, it is a joy to be a servant in Your household. Thank You for the strength and abilities that You give to all who desire to serve. I love you. Amen.”

November 6 – Motivational Gifts #1 – Prophecy

“Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Maichus.” John 18:10

Simon Peter typifies the PROPHETIC motivational gift. He was bold, direct, a little impulsive, perhaps, but a persuasive leader and intolerant of casual Christianity. Remember, it was Peter who walked to Jesus on the water (Matthew 14:29) and who impetuously said to Him, “Thou shalt never wash my feet.” (John 13:8)

Those with a prophetic motivation are the EYES of the body, usually with special insight and intuition about others… sort of a sixth sense given by the Holy Spirit. They must be careful not to be judgmental and unforgiving. It was Peter who asked “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother… ?“ (Matthew 18:21, NIV)

Their frankness can be viewed as harsh and insensitive, and often they come across a little on the negative side. However, they are important “watchdogs” in the Church, setting a clear path of uncompromising faith in God and willing to suffer for what is right. Peter also said, “We ought to obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29) If this is your motivational gift, pray that God will give you a balance through His compassion.

PRAY: “Loving Lord, thank You for putting leadership and prophetic insight into the body of Christ.  Help me to find my place to function using every gift You have given, in Jesus Name, amen.”

November 5 – Your Motivational Gift

“But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts to men.” Ephesians 4:7-8

God has GIFTED you. Perhaps you have never thought of it quite that way, but you should know that God has molded your character and personality in a way so that you make a unique contribution to the body of Christ.

I Corinthians 12:6 says, “And there are diversities of operations… “speaking of the different “workings” or “motivations” that God has uniquely built into the nature of each man. Some call them MOTIVATIONAL GIFTS, and they are listed in Romans 12:6-8:

“Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether PROPHECY, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or MINISTRY, let us wait on our ministering: Or he that TEACHETH on teaching; Or he that EXHORTETH, on exhortation: he that GIVETH, let him do it with simplicity; he that RULETH, with diligence; he that sheweth MERCY, with cheerfulness.”

Your ministry character reflects a dominance in ONE of these motivations, and you are encouraged to learn to minister in all seven. In the next seven days, you will study these different gifts for the purpose of better understanding how YOU “tick,” as well as those around you.

PRAY: “Creator of all mankind, thank You for making me uniquely Yours. Help me to discover the strengths and weaknesses of my character so that I can grow in You.”

November 4 – A Cloud of Witnesses

“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.” Hebrews 12:1

As a child, remember how crucial it was for your parents to be seated in the bleachers to watch you play your game or march in the band during half-time? Remember how important it was to you to have them in the audience at your piano recital or when you received your diploma from high school? Why? Because, it gave you confidence to perform at your best level. They were grown up and had already been where you were. Their encouragement produced a desire in you to achieve more.
The Apostle Paul must have seen the bleachers in heaven where all the saints who have gone on before are watching us still running our earthly races in the Faith. Can you imagine them jumping up and down, yelling and screaming at the top of their voices as they urge you on to each victory? “Come on, you can do it! You can make it through! You can win! We did it; you can, too!”
Today, be encouraged to look to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of your faith, and consider what He accomplished for you through His death and resurrection. (Hebrews 12:2) YES, YOU CAN MAKE IT, TOO!
PRAY: “Father, the going gets tough sometimes but, in my struggle against sin, I have not yet resisted to the point of my own bloodshed.* Thank You for Jesus! Amen.”

November 3 – The Voting Privilege

“Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.”  Proverbs 14:34

For Christians, the right and responsibility of voting is an opportunity to influence the direction of the nation toward godliness. Who else but Christians are concerned at all about spiritual and moral decay? To do nothing is irresponsible and possibly a sin. “To him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” (James 4:17)

The results of elections affect you and your family for generations to come. History has shown that some elections are won or lost by just a few voices. Your vote for righteousness can make a difference.

More importantly, your vote will please God. Any time you let your voice be heard for God, it is a testimony that pleases Him. You are to be a light that shines like “a city that is set on a hill” (Matthew 5:14), a living “epistle… known and read of all men” (II Corinthians 3:2). A “silent witness” is like salt that has lost its savour and “good for nothing” (Matthew 5:13).

Regardless of election outcomes, you know that your citizenship is sure in heaven and IN CHRIST you are a winner. Jesus said, “These things I have spoken unto you, that IN ME ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) (Emphasis supplied.)

PRAY: “Omniscient Father, You know what leadership is best for my nation. I want my vote to count for righteousness, truth, and justice Guide me, I pray. In Jesus’ Name, amen.”