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Time is Precious – So are Kids

Why spend time discovering my child’s motivational gift(s)?

Two weeks ago, I completed an 8 week class for women to discover their motivational gifts. It was an awesome experience! One of the ladies who went through the entire course told me at the end, “This should be mandatory teaching for every parent!”

Wow! Of course, I agreed with her! To know that she not only discovered her own motivational gift but understood the value of this rarely taught topic truly touched my heart and rekindled the fire I’ve had for such a long time; that parent’s would indeed see the value in discovering what their children’s motivational gifts are.

One of the ladies said this: “I can only imagine how different my life would have turned out had I understood as a child why I reacted to others the way I did. I could have been spared much disappointment and heart-ache. Now that I do understand, I can accept who God made me to be and work on the specific issues related to my gift; not see them as negatives, rather a gift from God. I feel that I can begin to manage my relationships better. This has helped me understand others better and why they do what they do!”

So, you may be wondering, What are these motivational gifts and why all the excitement?

Romans 12:6-8 verse 6: “Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; 7) Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; 8) 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.

Our primary motivational gift is one of the seven (7) described in Romans 12:6-8 and is with us—a part of us—from birth to grave. This gift can be recognized at a very early age if we know what to look for. Each of us possess a primary gift and possible a secondary. The gifts are revealed through our personality and character traits that motivate us to act in diverse ways. These traits are necessary to facilitate specific aspects of ministry with others.

For example: The child with the motivational gift of service will jump up to open a door for the person whose arms are filled, while the person who does not have this gift may let the person struggle on her own to open the door.

These gifts are multi-purposed: to move humanity forward in faith; to bring us to wholeness; to support one another’s journey; to help us interact with others in peace and harmony. The motivation to express these gifts comes from an inner drive that we all have, to express love to others. They are operational based on the needs of the recipient(s) of the gift.

While we each possess some aspects of all seven (7) of the gifts–as we grow into maturity each will manifest as the need arises–our primary gift will be our focus and move us in the direction that God intends us to personally go.

The root word for the motivational gifts is “charisma.” This comes from the word “char” which means joy. In the Strong’s Concordance, we learn that “charisma” is a gift of grace. That grace is extended as we move in the direction of his will for our lives. Grace is also a gift that enables us to do his will.

Imagine that your child is very strong-willed and you spend a lot of energy trying to get him / her to become obedient. This is normal parenting 101. However, if you do not understand that a strong-willed child most likely has a gift of leadership / facilitation you may hinder the development of that gift if, at the same time you are striving to instill a sense of obedience to authority, you do not help them take on projects that strengthen their God-given motivation to lead others by bringing a project to a successful completion. Put them in charge of small projects around the house and see if this makes a difference in their behavior.

I hope this inspires you to want to learn more about these beautiful gifts and which one(s) your children has.