4. Self-Care is About Self-Knowledge - 1 Corinthians 12:4
Not long ago, I felt God nudging me to sign up to serve in a worthy ministry at our church. I hesitated, because quite honestly, the work they do—one-on-one teaching—sounded exhausting for an introvert. But I knew I needed to obey.
To my surprise, the director asked if I’d mind helping them with their website. I could volunteer without leaving home. Apparently Jesus knew and honored my limitations.
In 1 Corinthians 12:4, Paul says, “Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.”
Jesus made me, therefore I should serve in obedience to God’s workmanship in me, offering up the strengths of my nature, while trusting him with my weaknesses. If I don’t pay attention to my gifts, temperament, and limits, I do myself harm.
Knowing our own gifts helps us discern where we are most effective. It helps us avoid guilt because we work out of calling instead of obligation. It helps us avoid envy or judgement because we know how we serve might not work for everyone.
If we serve without considering our limits, we risk disobedience. God commands us to do all things in Christ’s power, not our own. It might seem generous to say yes to any service opportunity, but we often do this out of the dangerous idolatry of our own power. As Eugene Peterson puts it, “…every Christian must be constantly vigilant against… a blasphemous anxiety to do God’s work for him.”
Photo Credit: Unsplash/Priscilla Du Preez