August 13, 2015

Rambling Thoughts—Talents and Gifts by T. L. Wiens

I’ve never found a list of talents and gifts in the Bible that includes writing. It is clear, some people have a unique ability to get words to paper just like some musicians make notes flow together. But is it a gift? Or a talent? Maybe it’s the medium God uses to enhance the gifts and talents bestowed upon us.
A talent is something you have that you develop over time. Athletes are talented in the area of sports. Many of us tend to lean towards jobs in areas where we have talent. Writing would very much fit under this heading. I recently met a young writer very resistant to seeking out any assistance—her writing was her gift. Sadly, I see a rocky path because of this stubbornness to realize it’s okay to develop a talent. There’s a lot more to writing than being able to put together 50,000 words to make a story and few of us have a handle on all the ins and outs involved in the process without some outside advice.
A gift is a bit different because you receive this from God. It’s the result of the Holy Spirit imposing something on you to enhance your spiritual life to bring glory to God. While writing itself doesn’t seem to qualify as a gift, for myself, much of the content within is reliant upon God’s guidance. My spiritual walk will influence this more than anything but I wouldn’t call this a gift.
Is writing a ministry? I struggle with this one. Many will disagree with me but I don’t believe pastors for the most part serve in ministry. Their need to eat dictates they work for their paycheque. If they were honest, most pastors would tell us that this holds them back in their ability to let God use their mouths as He wants. They are in many ways, hirelings. What makes something a ministry? I haven’t done a complete study but something I’ve noticed is the driving force behind the person. For some, that is serving God and spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. For others, it’s fame and having a long list of friends with common household names. And for some, it’s money. While writing can be a ministry, I don’t believe it is for many writers.
So I find myself evaluating my writing and realizing that means evaluating my life; especially my spiritual life. I need to make sure it all points to the glory of God whether it be a talent, gift, ministry or my job.


  1. Although I don't necessarily agree with all of your points, I appreciate your point of view.

    1. I don't think we always need to agree. It's good to stretch ourselves and consider other points of view. That's what will send me to study. It's because I heard something on this topic that made me think about this. And I don't have the issue entirely settled yet.

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  4. Hmm. .. some things to ponder for sure. I think your final sentence is the true message for me, Tammy.

  5. I like this thinking, Tammy. Is writing a gift, or is it the means for me to use my gift? I think it's the latter. I have a gift of encouragement, and (being a steadfast introvert) writing is a wonderful, stress-free avenue to encourage others! Makes good sense to me. :)

  6. Off the top of my head I would say I agree with Bobbi on this one--it is a means for an author to use their gift? I haven't put a lot of effort into researching this either but I have read enough books about writing and about authors (and other artists) to realize that it takes WORK! Jeff Goins has some interesting things to say on this subject in his book, "The Art of Work." It's a good book to help anyone process what their writing is all about. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Tammy.

  7. Like Marnie, I think you sum up your thoughts on this topic of gift or talents with your final sentence: "I need to make sure it all points to the glory of God whether it be a talent, gift, ministry or my job. In Romans 12:1-8, Paul writes about the church of Christ being of one body, but we each have different functions within that body "according to the grace given to each of us." Then Paul lists what I would consider a sample of possible gifts: prophesying, serving, teaching, encouraging, giving, and leading. What about singing, playing a musical instrument, working with children, and so on? Today we can use people who offer tech support, editing etc. In this short passage, Paul also says, ". . .I f your gift is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach. . ." To this, I believe we can add, If it is writing, then write! (There is a lesson there for some of us.)

    Paul expands his writing about abilities in 1 Corinthians, 12:1-29 where he talks about he gifts of the Holy Spirit. You opened a good topic for discussion and further reading, Tammy, and there are other scriptures for further study on this subject you have initiated.

  8. I have to find time to research this more. Thank you all for giving me different a prospective.


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