Lesson #7 – Gift of Service
Recap of Lesson #6. We learned a little bit about the powerful motivational gift of PROPHECY. Prophesying reveals unrighteous motives or actions by presenting truth. People with this gift have an ability to discern the character and motives of others. These are the ones who have an insistence that we learn to delineate between good and evil attitudes and actions (not people). Those with this gift are completely willing to experience personal brokenness as a means of developing personal humility.
They can also prompt others to understand the benefits of brokenness. They have a real concern for God’s reputation and can bring to light things previously concealed. You must “walk the walk so others will see Christ” is the message of the one with the motivational gift of prophecy.
The purest form of prophecy shows us Jesus and all that is embodied in what he taught and who he is. “… for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” Rev. 19:10
We learned that there are some wonderful traits that children with the gift of PROPHECY have:
1. These children are very people-oriented and does not like to be alone but frequently finds himself in that place.
2. Don’t plan on your child being an actor or an artist or anything that requires a good imagination. They don’t have one.
3. And, if your child is a girl with this gift you can take dolls off the Christmas list. They don’t like to play with them because they are imaginary.
4. Prophetic children cannot carry on a conversation with something that can’t talk back. These little ones like action.
5. Regarding books, they like to read books that teach a moral truth, that are factual, are true stories and about real people. They do not like fairy tales.
6. Those with a prophetic gift understand people and life way beyond their years.
7. They are extremely insightful.
8. They believe they are all good or all bad if they are told something that indicates either, such as “you didn’t make your bed up right.” They will light up like a light bulb if told, “Good job, Johnny. Your bed looks great!”
In This Lesson…
In this lesson we are going to learn more about the wonderful motivational gift of SERVICE.
Your precious servant is just as spiritual in nature and as important as anyone in the church, or in business, or at home and in the community. Think of where we would be without volunteers in the non-profit sector, including the churches across America. Churches depend on their memberships to take an active role in meeting the natural needs such as cleaning the church pews, cooking meals, cutting the grass, etc.
Children who exhibit the gift of serving are very practical. They are observant, detailed.
They are most happy when being in the background, left to do the job they have been assigned. Servers love to help around the house by completing practical tasks such as loading the dishwasher, dusting, sweeping, setting the table, raking the leaves, etc.
Do you sense someone is always following you around? Or do you frequently have a second set of hands working with you? If your child asks for jobs to help with, you are blessed with a true servant.
Purpose of the Gift of Service
Romans 12:7 – The purpose of the motivational gift of serving is to demonstrate love by offering practical assistance, not necessarily needs. Many people have the gift of serving and it may seem that there are more with this gift than any of the other seven gifts, primarily because we tend to recognize it more. These individuals take particular care to identify the needs of those around them. The goal is to keep one another built up to enable us all to see beyond our own needs and reach outside ourselves and into the community.
The spiritual gift of service (ministering) covers a wide range of activities. There are two Greek words for this gift. The first one, found in Romans 12:7, is Diakonia. The basic meaning of this word is “to wait tables,” but it is most often translated in the Bible as “ministry.” It refers to any act of service done in genuine love for the edification of the community. Our word “deacon” comes from the same Greek word.
The word Antilepsis is translated as “helping” and is in 1 Corinthians 12:28. It has a similar meaning: to help or aid in love within the community. And “ministering” in Romans 12:7. The one who is a server has the Spirit-given capacity and desire to serve God by rendering practical help in both physical and spiritual matters; they help take care of the daily aspects of life. Watch for children that enjoy assisting in the needs of their friends, and even those they don’t know.
A server can be described as one who works very much behind the scenes, quietly, without regard for recognition or self-promotion. This spiritual gift is just as important to the Lord as the more public gifts. Helpers do the things that we take for granted and can work alone without supervision. They will often do things that no one else notices and often don’t mention what they have done. The gift of service is a strong and powerful gift. And when one serves with humility there are great rewards.
Challenges With the Gift of Service
Let’s see what some of the misunderstandings can be for these children. Because of their desire to help give practical assistance they may appear to be pushy. They can get grouchy when they have taken on too much, a sign that they need to back off a bit. This little one would rather help you than do their homework. So, it’s not that they don’t want to do their homework, it’s that their gift prompts them to want to meet your need by helping you accomplish your tasks.
Because they are quick to respond to a need, if you have a class of 10 children and ask for volunteers for a specific task, Tony may always raise his hand to volunteer leaving Jimmy and Mary feeling left out. Servers find it difficult to say no and may volunteer too fast without considering their current work load. When they like a teacher they desire to help them even more so to show their support. As adults, these are those that may fall into the trap of becoming “workaholics”.
Sometimes, servers will not complete what they start and neglect their own needs or those in their own family. By trying to meet so many needs of others, this can be misinterpreted as wanting approval from others or not wanting to help at home.
Little servers need to get instructions before they jump in to do a task. They are so eager to help. This can cause inferior quality work and an additional misunderstanding that they don’t want to learn.
Because servers have the tendency to overcommit and not take time to learn how to perform some tasks they usually do not make good facilitators. Churches and businesses make the mistake of putting servers in leadership roles because they like to work. This can be a huge mistake. Martha did not have the skills needed to lead Mary.
Development of the Gift of Service
Developing the gift of serving should be easier than the other gifts primarily because you have a willing vessel. Here are some suggestions to help them overcome their weaknesses such as getting their feelings hurt if they do not sense sincere appreciation for what they do, saying yes too many times, or balancing spiritual growth with their motivational gift to serve.
Let them help you around the house by limiting them to a certain number of projects a week. Be sure and give them instructions on new projects. They will feel a need to work quickly thinking that doing more is better than doing suitable work.
Be sure to praise them for the work they do. Servers need sincere appreciation but generally do not require public recognition.
Make sure they take time to play with their friends. All work and no play will make them grouchy even when they are using their gift.
Monitor the number of activities they can be involved in at school or church. These go-getters can make good executives, but most are content to be followers.
Take time each week to participate with them in learning biblical and spiritual principles. They need a good understanding of this to balance their motivation to work and accomplish tasks. Be sure and let them know that their gift is just as spiritual as any of the other seven gifts.