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Summary: A sermon about being a good steward of our what has given us to serve Him with.

As we think about being good stewards of our talents, I want us to first consider what the Bible says about the priority of ministry. In other words, why should you be interested in finding a place of service within the life of the church? Let me share ten reasons why you should be interested in discovering your place of service within the church.

You’ve been created for ministry!

"For we are God s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." - Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)

2. You’ve been saved for ministry!

"It is He who saved us and chose us for His holy work,

not because we deserved it but because that was His plan long before the world began." - 2 Timothy 1.9 (LB)

3. You’ve been called to ministry!

"I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received" - Ephesians 4:1 (NIV)

You have been chosen by God Himself-you are priests of the King... you are God’s very own - all this is so that you may show to others how God called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. Once you were less than nothing; now you are God’s own!"- 1 Peter 2:9-10 (LB)

4. You’ve been gifted for ministry!

"But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that." - 1 Corinthians 7:7 (NIV)

5. You’ve been authorized for ministry!

"(Jesus said) All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples . . .” - Matthew 28:l8-19a (NIV)

"We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors." - 2 Corinthians 5:20 (NIV)

6. You’ve commanded to minister!

“Take heed to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you may fulfill it.” - Colossians 4:17 (NKJV)

7. You’re to be prepared for ministry!

"Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church . . ." - Ephesians 4:11-12 (NLT)

8. The body of Christ needs your ministry!

"(Jesus said) The harvest is great but the workers are few." - Matthew 9:37 (NLT)

9. You’re accountable for your ministry!

"So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God." - Romans 14:12 (NIV)

10. You will be rewarded for your ministry!

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not men, since you know you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward."- Colossians 3:23-24 (NIV)

JOY IN MINISTRY

Some people have a job in church. Others get involved in a ministry. What’s the difference?

• If you’re doing it because no one else will, it’s a job. If you’re doing it to serve the Lord, it’s a ministry.

• If you’re doing it just well enough to get by, it’s a job. If you’re doing it to the best of your ability, it’s a ministry.

• If you’re doing it so long as it doesn’t interfere with other activities, it’s a job.

• If you’re committed to staying with it even when it means letting go of other things, it’s a ministry.

• If you quit because no one praised you or thanked you, it’s a job. If you stay with it even though no one seems to notice, it’s a ministry.

• If your concern is "success," it’s a job.

If your concern is faithfulness, it’s a ministry.

• It’s hard to get excited about a job.

• It’s almost impossible not to be excited about a ministry!

• If God calls you to a ministry, don’t treat it like a job. If you have a job in church, give it up and find a ministry.

God doesn’t want us feeling stuck with a job, but excited and faithful to Him in a ministry.

With these things in mind, let’s see what we can learn from 1 Peter 4:10 about being good stewards of our talents. (Read text) Peter says that if I am going to be a good steward of my talents, I must:

1. Understand what I have to minister with - v. l0a

If kids never opened the gifts they have received from their parents, needless to say, the parents would be most unhappy. In much the same way, it grieves the heart of our heavenly Father when His children do not use the gifts he has given us!

"And do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live." - Ephesians 4:30 (NLT)

The fact is that we are all gifted for ministry by God! What we have to use in serving the Lord has been given to us by His grace! God has uniquely "shaped" me for ministry.

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