Spiritual Gifts Discernment
The following exercise can help you see how you may relate to our understanding of 25 spiritual gifts mentioned in the New Testament.
The results will suggest direction for service you can take, will confirm thoughts and feelings you have had, or may cause you to question how you have seen yourself in the past. The results will not define who you are or replace your relationship with the Holy Spirit. The exercise is a tool to help us discover, develop and use the gifts God has given us to build up His body.
Note: The twenty-five gifts listed in the Bible are not the full extent of how God gifts people to serve. It is very possible that you don’t exactly fit anywhere on the list. It is also true that the twenty-five gifts listed all correspond to aspects of life in the Spirit that every believer can manifest to one degree or another. So, on the one hand, this exercise is about considering where God might be leading you to concentrate (your gifts); on the other hand, it will help you discern how faithfully you have already been exercising the Spirit’s power (your roles).
How to use this exercise
1) Prepare your attitude. The best discernment will result if you take the time to ponder all 125 statements individually. Be prayerful, be honest, don’t be overly conservative in your estimation of yourself but don’t be unrealistic, either. When you respond to the statements, think of how you actually are now or how you have been, not how you would like to be. Also remember, if you worry about how you compare to others, or even compare yourself to your own expectations, you won’t find out much about yourself.
2) Respond to each statement by putting a number, 0, 1, 2, 3, or 4, beside it. You are saying to what degree this statement is or has been true of you. If you write “4” it means “a lot, all the time. Marking “0” means “not at all, never.”
Think about all parts of each simple statement. Don’t rush. Ask God to help you. Make sure you don’t respond so that the exercise will work out the way you think it ought to. At the same time, don’t take too long to do this. Your first impression on a given question is probably the best one to record.
3) When you are all done (not before, or it may influence your responses), work out the tally sheet according to the directions.
How to use the results
1) This would be good information to discuss in your cell and with other friends/mentors. So they can help you discern how to exercise your gift(s) as a member of Circle of Hope. This personal process is just as important as your own estimation.
2) If you like, make an appointment with our pastor for some personal help on interpreting the results, and the word of your small group, or in discerning how the Lord would like you to function as part of his body. You may have another trusted mentor in your life that might fulfill the same service with good results.
3) Experiment with your top twelve gifts. Discover them, develop them, and use them. The Bible studies available on each gift will also help you learn more about them.