One of the things I tried to teach my children was to appreciate their strengths all the while appreciating others strengths. I could use several examples of this here. Yet, this is the best one that will simply explain what I mean and why. When they were little we would go shopping at Costco. At our Costco where we lived they had the snack bar outside. So, if they had behaved and if it was lunch time we would sometimes stop and get a hot dog for them to share. It was so funny to watch them because I would half the hot dog and they would want different toppings. One would want ketchup the other mustard, one onions the other none and so on. They would then proceed to eat their hot dog. One would eat the hot dog first leaving the bun and the other would eat the bun first leaving the hot dog. Then, almost every single time they would swap. The one that ate the hot dog would eat the other half hot dog and the other would eat the other side of the bun (even though there was mustard on it). I almost stopped cutting it in half but it was too much fun to watch them work it out between themselves. Whenever one of my children would come to me upset that they could not do something as well as the other I would patiently explain to them that each of us has our own set of strengths and we can’t all be alike otherwise the world would be boring and we could never accomplish great things together. I would remind them of what their strengths were and how the other wasn’t as strong in that area whether it be physical, academic or reactions. They grew up without jealousy: fully secure in knowing who they are in Christ; understanding how fearfully and wonderfully they were created by a Heavenly Father that loves them; fully loving themselves; and not doubting they had exactly what they needed for the task set before them. This doesn’t mean there weren’t ups and downs it just means there was a means to an end here.
I tell this story as a way to remind Christians how important difference is in the body of Christ. Remember when Paul wrote to the Corinth church saying:
“God’s various gifts are handed out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit. God’s various ministries are carried out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit. God’s various expressions of power are in action everywhere; but God himself is behind it all. Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit, and to all kinds of people! The variety is wonderful:
- wise counsel
- clear understanding
- simple trust
- healing the sick
- miraculous acts
- distinguishing between spirits
- interpretation of tongues.
All these gifts have a common origin, but are handed out one by one by the one Spirit of God. He decides who gets what, and when.” 1 Corinthians 12:4-11 MSG (emphasis mine)
I want you to note the items I bolded above. Paying extra special attention to them because I want to talk about an important subject that impacts the body of Christ in a way that I see as unhealthy. And I want to be healthy and see God for Who He is. Let’s talk about the bolded items from above:
- God’s various ministries (serving) originate in God’s Spirit and we understand that we are intertwined with God’s Spirit inside of us (see You Do Not Know What Kind of “spirit” You Are Of for more info).
- Each person is given something to do that shows who God is. This means we each have a way of showing the world Who God Is, just like Jesus did when He was on the earth. Now Jesus was able to show Who God Is in every situation because He is God. We, on the other hand, have Him residing in us through His Spirit and we have our own personalities, which He created, together we show Who God is through serving and this in turn benefits the many that are around us every day.
- All kinds of people get all kinds of things handed out by the Holy Spirit within them. There is a variety of things handed out originating from the same Holy Spirit. A variety to many, of many different things. This is so that……not ONE person can say they have it all because only Jesus did.
- Finally, He is the One Who decides who gets what and when. We do not decide this; because He knows best as H created us and our personalities.
Paul goes on to tell the Corinth believers, ““But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of.” (1Corinthians 12:19-20) It was important that we realize we need one another and each person in the body of believers is just as important as the other. Without one another we do not or can not make up the body.
God will not give all His power to just one individual. We would not know what to do with it. We can also, in our humanity, begin to think one gift is superior to others and I believe this is where we have gotten into trouble. Many Christian believers believe in something called “impartation”. This is understood or taught to be when a believer who has a particular ministry/gift (which simply means serving) that shows Who God is and lays hands on another believer to “impart” this same exact ministry/gift to the other person. This is not biblical and falls under what I see as a byproduct of an antichrist action (see The Realization for further clarity). There is no “impartation” in the Bible; remember from above that it is the Holy Spirit Who gives within each of us. Now there is laying on of hands to 1) receive the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:17) and 2) to stir up the gifts (ministries) given to you by the Holy Spirit (1Timothy 4:14); but no “impartation”. This doesn’t mean the only way you can receive the Holy Spirit is by laying on of hands and it doesn’t mean the only way your gifts can be stirred is by laying on of hands either. Let God be God and let you be you with Him in you.
So, why was there such a need to add something to scripture? I really can’t answer this question; but I do believe it is a byproduct of an antichrist action. If you have read The Realization, you will notice similar outcomes caused by adding this to scripture. Here is a list of problems my friends and I have discussed that arise out of “impartation”:
- The imparter or imparters (the one or group imparting said “gift”) appear to be better or more spiritual, at a “higher level”, have more of God, or are loved more by God than the impartee or impartee (those receiving the “gift”) (aka:the Pedestal from The Realization)
- Valuing one gift (ministry) over another.
- Jealousy amongst those that aren’t called on for their gift to be imparted because it is viewed as a necessary gift but not one you would really want.
- Thinking there is something wrong with you, the impartee, (ie: not being good enough to receive the gifts on your own, just don’t measure up, will never be able to put in the time and effort the “imparter” seems to do to maintain this gift) if you don’t or are unable to perform the imparted gift. Which can lead to:
- The impartee trying to fake a gift- which can led to much hurt or
- The imparter feeling like they didn’t pray hard enough or were not good enough to actually impart the gift or maybe they really don’t have that gift—-lots of doubt.
- Lack of humility because you are not content with who you are in God.
- The belief in levels of Christianity because some gifts are just more popular or more exciting or more in front. See number 1 and 3 above.
- Lastly, what my friends and I have seen too many times is that either person involved (the imparter and or the impartee) gets a false image of God and this possibly can lead to people being disappointed in God; and or not believing in the power of Jesus or the power of the Holy Spirit within themselves.
This is not what the Lord wants for us because it is unhealthy faith. None of this shows us Who God is. This is why Paul continued with this for the people of Corinth:
An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn’t be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, “Get lost; I don’t need you”? Or, Head telling Foot, “You’re fired; your job has been phased out”? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the “lower” the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it’s a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn’t you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?” 1 Corinthians 12:20-24 MSG (emphasis mine)
No matter how
significant you are,
it is only because of
what you are a part of
Yes, this type of belief system will create a monster. The imparter thinking they have all the answers and are somehow closer to God which leads to feelings of having to perform all the time. The impartee doubts their own gifts and how God made them unique and special to show Him to the world. Both negate the fact that “no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of”. This in no way shows God to the people around us. It creates competition where we need not compete because we are one body.
Without comparisons. Such great words. We want to celebrate our differences all the while acknowledging we are all made in His Image. We each have been given things that will show Who God is dependent on how our Creator created us. One is not better than the other but is different. The difference is necessary. It is beautiful and amazing that our Father loves us so much He wanted to be so intimate with each of us just the way He created us. Amazing Love. ❤️