1 Corinthians 12:1-11 (NRSV)

1 Now concerning spiritual gifts,  brothers and sisters,  I do not want you to be uninformed. 2 You know that when you were pagans, you were enticed and led astray to idols that could not speak. 3 Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says “Let Jesus be cursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except by the Holy Spirit. 4 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.   

Romans 12:6 (NRSV)

6 We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith;

DEVOTION – Phyllis S. Church (Kentucky)

Today I read a devotional in The Upper Room about a bus called “Special” that was used to take Honduran villagers to church.  Even though it had a cracked windshield along with mechanical problems that couldn’t be fixed, it was used for an important purpose.

Then I thought about some of the people that I know – people who are less than perfect.  I thought of Joel, the pianist who is blind but who can stir people with his beautiful music; of the lady whom some people regard as strange but who offers her time to pray for others; and of the boy with Down’s Syndrome who seems to know when someone is suffering and offers them hugs, even though his words are difficult to understand.

None of us is perfect.  But just as God uses the bus called Special and people regarded as strange or disabled by human standards, God can use us for divine purposes.  Broken buses, people with mental or physical disabilities – God calls each of us to special service in this world.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Where we see only imperfection, God sees perfection.

PRAYER: Lead us, O Lord, to awareness of our purpose in this life.  Open our eyes to opportunities for service right where we are, with whatever skills we have.  Amen.