I have the upmost respect for mechanics. I have attempted some DIY mechanics in my driveway and without fail every time I do, I am reminded that our wise and all-knowing Father in heaven gave that gift to someone other than me. Clearly there are many mechanics in this world but most of us “have a guy.” When it’s time for an oil change, brake job, or something else we have a trusted mechanic that helps gets the job done. I “have a guy”, he has been our mechanic now for many years and I trust in his ability to not only keep my vehicles in good running condition but safe for driving my family around each and every day. 1
In his first letter to the church Peter teaches us about living for God, to live not for what the world desires but for the will of God. Today, much like the audience Peter was writing to we face a similar battle. The habits or ways of the world have an uncanny way of drawing us into its power of looking out for number one… ourselves. In chapter 4:10 Peter says, “Each of you should use whatever gifts you have received to serve others… If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ.
One of the things that made me stop and think after reading this verse a couple of times, was that Peters instruction for us had nothing to us. Let me explain. It’s about serving others, not being self-serving; It is about bringing glory and praise to God, not putting ourselves in the limelight. It takes a
supernatural strength of character and humility to live a life that brings honor and glory to God over ourselves. A strength that Peter tells us God provides.
What comes to your mind when you think about “gifts” in context of your faith? For the most part we think about passages like Romans chapter 12, 1 Corinthians 12 or Ephesians 4 where we find references to the gifts of evangelism, teaching, giving, administration, healing and others. When we commit our lives to Christ, we, through the Holy Spirit are given one or more of these spiritual gifts. Being uniquely created by God, we use them in many different ways. The call to serve one another in 1 Peter 4:10 refers to an act of service done in genuine love and for the encouragement and growth of those who are being served.
So, why did I choose to relate this message of gifts and serving to a mechanic? Well, “my guy” the one who helps with my mechanical work, does so with an attitude of genuine love. Frist, he loves to help others. Second, he loves what he does. He does the work because it is a part of his ministry of serving others. I used this example of a servant’s heart because it is inspiring, it often sparks the desire in me to use the gifts I have been given to serve others.
The things we do, the gifts that we have, whether it be fixing vehicles, creating cards of encouragement or thanks, making meals for those in need, lending a listening ear or quietly serving behind the scenes on a Sunday morning, each one when done with an attitude of genuine love for others brings honor, glory and praise to God. That is what he has called us to do.