here to help and encourage students sensing a
call to ministry

Being shaped to serve

By Joyce Ashcraft

What shape are you? Have you discovered your spiritual gifts, those special abilities that just come naturally to you? These gifts were given to you by the Holy Spirit to be used in building God's kingdom. Do you think God might be calling you to preach? Ask your pastor or youth minister for an opportunity to speak. It may be at a nursing home or at a junior high youth gathering. However, as you practice the actions associated with preaching, you may find that they are like second nature to you. Your experiences will help you discover your spiritual gifts.

You are also blessed with a personality that will help you express all that God is to you. With every personality, there are traits that are positive and others that are negative. The discipline of knowing who you are is an important part of being shaped to serve. Like the Disney song, you must learn to "accentuate the positive" and "eliminate the negative." Learning to express the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience and other fruits of the spirit through the personality that God has given you will help you be shaped to serve in whatever context you find yourself.

Another action that will help to shape you for service is engaging not yet believers in relationship and showing them who Jesus is to you. Make sure you take opportunities to express care and concern as well as sharing the story of Christ's salvation with those who do not know him. This will be a part of whatever God has called you to do.