The African Bishop, St. Augustine, once prayed this way: “Lord, Give what you command and command what you give.” St. Augustine was asking God to do what many Christians often say today, namely, “God will give us what it takes to do what He expects us to do.” This was certainly true when God told Moses to build the Tabernacle—the place where ancient Israel would worship. After giving detailed instructions on how to build the Tabernacle and to create garments that priests should wear, God told Moses he had already prepared gifted men to do the work. We read God’s words to Moses in Exodus Chapter 35: “The LORD has filled Bezalel with the Spirit of God, giving him great wisdom, ability, and expertise in all kinds of crafts. He is a master craftsman, expert in working with gold, silver, and bronze. He is skilled in engraving and mounting gemstones and in carving wood. He is a master at every craft.” There is an important truth here for us. God not only gives spiritual gifts—like teaching and preaching—to build up the Body of Christ. He is the source of all abilities. So wherever we are—within or outside of a local church—we should use whatever abilities God has given us to make a difference in the lives of others. That should be true whether our activities bring us income or not.
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