Sermons

Summary: Spiritual Gifts are like superhero powers. This lesson takes a look at those gifts as they relate to God’s plan and His command to Love Him with all your heart soul, mind, and strength. Student ministry PowerPoint format.

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[YOU ARE A SUPERHERO!]

Slide graphic – generic superhero flying through the air

Slide text – “I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received” (Ephesians 4:1)

A few years ago the World Press Review carried a quotation from the National Concord of Lagos, Nigeria. That paper reported that twenty-six lakes have been found beneath the Sahara Desert. The American space shuttle, Columbia, determined by echoes it received that there are miles and miles of underground rivers beneath that arid land also. It is sad to think of the people who are starving and dying of thirst there for lack of life-giving water because those hidden resources—those underground lakes and rivers—have not been tapped.

In a similar way, there are a number of spiritual resources that lie untapped in our church and in our individual lives because we’ve simply not gone deep enough. We’re missing out on what the Christian life is all about.

[YOUR GIFT IS NOT THE ONLY WAY]

Slide graphic – man in business suit looking at himself in mirror and seeing reflection of superhero

Slide text – “6We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.” (Romans 12:6-8)

Gift projection is expecting others to serve the way we do...”Do as I do!”

This reminds me of the man who was driving down the expressway in rush hour traffic when he received a call from his wife on his cell phone, “Honey, you need to be careful driving home because I just heard on the news that there’s some idiot driving in the wrong direction on the same road you’re on.” To which the husband responded, “It’s not just one; there are hundreds of them!”

Have you ever been around someone who always thinks they’re right? There’s a lot of people like that in the church – people gifted in a particular way who measure everyone else by how well they compare in this one area. They can’t imagine there is any other way to serve God.

You can’t forget that God uses us just because He wants to, not because he needs us. Paul calls spiritual gifts “gifts of grace.” You can be a lot more humble when you realize that it isn’t your gift – it as a gift of grace (something you don’t deserve) from God. Everything we are and everything we have is by God’s grace.

Some people think their gift is so special they will certainly be rewarded. The bible actually does say that you will be rewarded for your faithful service, but don’t think for a minute that it is because you deserve it. If I received the reward I deserved I’d end up in Hell, and so would you.

[YOUR GIFT IS NOT EVEN THE BEST WAY]

Slide graphics – picture of sign “sale on body parts” (from junkyard). Pictures of Super Bowl VII – Dolphins vs. Redskins

Slide text – And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; or again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” (1 Corinthians 12:21)

All people tend to have an inflated view of the importance of their own gift. They think their gift is the most important. The truth is that all gifts are necessary, like different parts of the same body. Is there a part of your body that isn’t important and useful to you? Is there a part you could really do without?

There has only been one professional football team that went undefeated in regular season (14-0), undefeated in playoffs and went on to win the Super bowl. The 1972 Miami Dolphins. No other team before or since has matched their record. Every year 30-some odd teams try, but for 3 decades, it stands alone. Sports fans all have their own opinions about who might be the “Greatest Team of All Time”, but one of the 1972 Dolphin team members put it best: “Perfection has a way of shutting peoples mouths.”

The Washington Redskins coach, going into Super Bowl VII against Shula’s Dolphins, was asked to comment on the incredible Miami defense. “I can’t recall any of their names,” he said, “but they are a matter of great concern to us.” That year, the Miami defensive line became known as the “No-Name Defense.” What made that team special was not the handful of superstars – it was the dedication of every team member. The willingness of every player to execute his position with excellence for a common purpose. Something special happens when everybody plays their position. The whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts. They had some great players, no doubt. But plenty of other teams over history have had better personnel. More Pro-Bowl players, superstars, Hall of Famers. Yet no team has reached level of achievement that they did.

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