The lesson on August 28, 2011 covered Romans Chapter 12, verses 3 through 8. Like many of our lessons in the study of Romans, this lesson really reached out to me. If you are curious about the lesson, you can find it here. I encourage you to not only study the lesson, but also read the entire chapter in Romans to ensure you have the full context.
For through the grace given to me I say to every man among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.
For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
And since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let each exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith; if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching; or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
What I learned:
The thing that stood out the most to me in this lesson is the importance of using ones gift to its full purpose, and working to fulfill the role of that gift in the church. Each believer is blessed with one or more spiritual gifts, and those gifts have a specific purpose in the church. In the beginning of verses for this lesson, Paul talks about an individual not being arrogant due to their abilities, but truly remembering that they are only one member of a vast team. Since I am a big football fan, and the college season began today for my Ohio State Buckeyes, I will use a football example to explain.
On a football team, there are 11 players on the field at one time. In the example above, our team is on offense. The goal of the offense is to score points. Each player on the team has a specific purpose in this play, and each must work together to reach the common goal of scoring points. The guards (G), tackles (T), center (C), and half-back (HB), have the job of protecting the quarterback (QB) in this play. The wide-receivers (WR), and the tight-end (TE) have specific routes they have to run so the QB can throw them the ball. If executed properly, the team is closer to reaching their common goal.
Like the football example, each believer has a specific spiritual gift, with a specific purpose. Not all believers have the same spiritual gift, but each spiritual gift has an important role in the church. Every believer cannot be a QB. If every believer were a QB there would not be center to give the quarterback the ball. There would not be guards, tackles, and for this particular play, a half-back to protect the QB. The spiritual gifts given to believers are each very important, and all work together to reach the common goal of the church, which is to glorify God.
These are the things that I found the most important in this week’s lesson. One should not be arrogant due to the abilities they have been granted, but instead remember that they are just another important member of a large team. For that team to function properly, and work together to reach the common goal, each member must fulfill his or her function with zeal! Remember, just like the above example each believer needs the other members with their gifts for the church to grow, and glorify God. A single believer cannot do that alone, just like a single member of a football team cannot win a game without the other members of their team helping in some manner.
Hopefully, I have written something here that you can learn and apply to your life. As always, please read and study the complete passage, and the lessons are available to aid you here.