Exercise the Gifts

Tween and I need more exercise so the last few Sundays, rather than sleeping in or lingering over coffee, as Guy leaves for the early church service and Teen soaks in his much-needed post-Saturday-night sleep, I’ve gotten Tween and I + dog(s) out the door for a brisk walk.

The body was made for moving. It’s a gift and we need to care for it.

I love to walk, my favorite form of exercise. Getting outside, waving at neighbors, feeling the sun – or the fog – on my face, watching my dog happy-prance, all good! Tween, on the other hand, hasn’t been excited to exercise, claims I’m torturing him with this terrible walking thing (hah!). He drags his feet and strolls as slowly as possible, at least 25 feet behind me. He complains loudly the whole way. Let’s just say this has put a damper on my enthusiasm.

It hasn’t dampened my commitment to our shared need for exercise, however, so I asked him to get ready to walk yet again this morning. We’re dog-sitting a beautiful, energetic four-year-old boxer-lab mix and he needs his exercise. Like I said, we all do, but this dog gave me one more “excuse” to include Tween.

Commence complaints. Refusals. And bribes.

Gotta love Guy, he knows how to motivate Tween: a good walk + a good attitude the whole way = use of Dad’s iPad this afternoon. It worked!

Even better, he decided to amp the experience and run for stretches. Run, walk, and rarely trailing behind, he might even have enjoyed himself. I surely had a better morning.

The more we exercise the more we can enjoy it. I know when I fall out of the habit it gets h-a-r-d to get going again, all the more reason to not fall out of the habit.

The body is just one of the many gifts God has given us. Our personalities/temperaments, our life experiences, our interests and passions, our natural talents and our spiritual gifts – all gifts from God, all in need of exercise. And the more we use them, the more fun we have, the more we live the life God has intended.

Today’s Bible study focuses on people using their gifts to serve God’s people and expand the Kingdom. If you don’t know your spiritual gifts, try this assessment. Then get out there and exercise for God’s glory!

Share about an experience in which you really enjoyed serving others. What about that opportunity made it fun for you?

Read Acts 6:1-7.
Describe the problem. Describe the apostles’ solution. What made this solution effective?
What characteristics qualified individuals for service (v. 3)?
What about the apostles’ solution enabled God’s word to spread (v. 7)?

Have you experienced church growth as a good problem, an uncomfortable joy? Explain.
Who stands out to you as “full of the Spirit and wisdom”? How so?
How do you think God is calling you to use your gifts to serve the church and expand the Kingdom?
What is Jesus saying to you through this passage and how will you respond?

Pray for the Spirit to direct you to the ministry calling He has for you during this season.

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