June 12, 2011

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“Now there are varieties of gifts; but the same Spirit and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone.”
1 Corinthians 12:4-6  (NRSV)

A method I learned as African Bible Study involves reading a passage three times, preferably aloud, and pondering three questions.  Originally designed for small-group discussion, its variations go by several names. I find the method also enriches a personal meditation.

The opening question asks for the word or short phrase that speaks to me.
Activates jumped out the first time I went through today’s passage.

After the second reading I consider why that word is important.  The study becomes especially eye opening when my choice has multiple meanings. Today I tried energizes, fuels, and excites to expand the opportunities and ramifications of activates.

The third reading puts the spotlight on what I am going to do about my insights. I am struck by the inherent power of God at work and available to everyone in so many different gifts and services. We not only can’t do them alone, we are not expected to do so. What surprised me was a budding enthusiasm that replaced my wariness about spiritual gifts in general.  I have some exploring to do!

Prayer:
Dear Lord, please activate the gifts of the Spirit in us so that we can better serve you and our neighbors. Amen

Question:
Which of my spiritual gifts most needs your activation?

Written by Nancy Alice Morton

The Bridge is a collaborative ministry by four Downtown Des Moines churches. The Bridge Meditations are part of the ministry of The Bridge which is working to enrich the lives of those working, living and visiting downtown Des Moines. Programs developed by The Bridge offer spiritual formation and development, professional counseling, holistic health and family support. The Connection Cafe is a Bridge ministry which provides a free mid-day meal five days per week. The Connection Cafe is located next to the YWCA on Grand Avenue and is supported by many churches and civic organizations in its ministry. For more information, or to volunteer to help with The Bridge, The Connection Cafe or other Downtown Des Moines ministries contact Rob Hoover at 515-771-1481 or by email at theconnectioncafe@hotmail.com
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