So it is with you. Since you are eager to have spiritual gifts, try to excel in gifts that build up the church.
Thoughts for Today:In our passage today, Paul is presenting the proper motive for attending church. What should it be? To learn, to be a blessing, to bless others, and share what God has given us (spiritual gifts, tithes and offerings). In other words, demonstrating an eagerness to excel in gifts that build up the church.
Unfortunately, the motives are too often wrong. For example, people attend because they feel guilty (need to pay a debt back to God); fearful (if I don't go God will punish me); or selfish (get a blessing from God or use resources of the church). However, when we go to church with the right perspective we will be prepared to give of ourselves. It is similar to the type of preparation we expect of a pastor or any other teacher.
As a young man, I was asked by my pastor to teach the Wednesday evening Bible study at church. I took the responsibility and my preparation time very seriously. I spent many hours researching, memorizing and rehearsing. And just as it wouldn't have been right for me to show up ill-equipped or disorganized, the body has a responsibility to do their part as well. And it's not only to show up and warm a seat. We should all pray with an expectation the Lord will use us individually, and He will minister to the church and the world -- through the dissemination of the gifts He has given us.
Questions to Ponder:It is through us that God chooses to build up His church. Are you ready to do your part? Do you just attend church, or are you prepared to be a blessing to others? In what ways can you give of yourself? In what ways are you contributing now?