According to the Bible, every Christian has been given at least one spiritual gift to use in service to the body of Christ. “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen”. So, an important step in determining how to best serve in the church is for us to discover what our spiritual gifts are. Of course, we don’t have to know what our gift is before we start getting involved in the church. In fact, we often discover our gifts in the process of serving.
There is a difference between the Body of Christ universal and the local church Christians attend for corporate worship. But there is no difference in how Christians ought to use their spiritual gifts, because serving God is a twenty-four-hour proposition, not a Sunday-only enterprise. All Christians everywhere should be serving God in their local churches and looking for opportunities to serve outside the walls of a church building. It may be difficult to discover which spiritual gift(s) God has bestowed, but it’s better to serve somewhere than nowhere. Often, the discovery of gifts becomes more clear in the doing—as we serve in various jobs, we learn what we are good at and what we have a heart for.
There are always more needs than willing workers; this was true in Christ’s day and is still true today. It’s never a problem to find a need in the local church. From evangelizing the community to cleaning the bathrooms, there is always plenty of work to be done. It is good to inquire of the church leadership regarding the needs of the church.
Every member of every church should be serving in some way, and every servant of the Lord should remember that it’s more than just serving others; it’s loving them: “Serve one another humbly in love” (Galatians 5:13). Serving the church can take on many forms: preparing a meal for a family struck by illness, visiting an elderly, housebound widow, or just picking up a phone and saying, “I was thinking about you today.” Christians may busy themselves in tasks of service like the ones listed above, but endless performing, without love, is meaningless. As we go about serving God and others, let us do so with a spirit of humility and brotherly love. Yours in Christ,