Neglecting the gift

1 Timothy 4:14 Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.

reject giftImagine someone giving you a really nice gift. Go ahead, use your imagination. What is it you would really love to have? It can be a diamond ring, a new bike, even a new car. Maybe it’s a vacation, or a puppy, or a free dinner.  How nice of that person to give it to you, huh? Some of you have some pretty big imaginations, so if your dream gift came true, it would take a very generous person.

Now imagine getting a less tangible but equally beneficial gift.  Maybe the gift is encouragement. Maybe you get handed the gift to be a brilliant teacher. Or what if someone was able to give you the gift of insight?  Wouldn’t that be cool?  Here’s the thing, the Bible says that God gives good gifts. But the good gifts he gives aren’t necessarily new cars (although I could tell you some stories). He gives us spiritual gifts that benefit both our lives and the lives of others.

Here in 1 Timothy 4, Paul is encouraging Timothy not to neglect his gift. Now isn’t that interesting… it would be like someone giving you that brand new dream gift and then you reject it.  You say no thanks to the vacation and don’t bother with the diamond ring.  Or maybe you receive it, but then don’t use it. It’s yours to use, but you let it sit and collect dust.  That sounds pretty crazy, doesn’t it?

But I wonder if there are many of us that are doing that exact thing with the gifts God has given us. I wonder if the very things He has deposited in us are collecting dust rather than being used as He intended them to be. Paul’s charge to Timothy was to use the gift that God gave him. Don’t neglect it.  We should do the same.

*Are you neglecting the gifts God has given you?