Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.1 Corinthians 12:4-7
Dreams tell us about ourselves, their images expressing aspects of our inner life. In a dream I had this week there was a man who by appearance was very ordinary but who did some extraordinary things. In the dream I thought, “There is something about that man that is deeper, something more than he appears on the surface. I wonder what it is.” As I reflected on this dream, I realized that this ordinary man who did some extraordinary things is a part of me. What is his presence in my dream inviting me to know? I believe it is that I, and all of us, are more than we realize. Much more. And that it is time to own it. We all can do extraordinary things through the life of God within us.
As the Apostle Paul wrote to the church in Corinth, God is the activating life in every person. That is the something more in us than appears on the surface. It takes courage to become acquainted with it for it always summons us out of complacency. It always takes us on an adventure! That life expresses through us in different gifts and avenues of service. Each person has a unique purpose and is talented in distinctive ways. No gift is better than another. All are needed. Most interesting is the reason Paul gives for Spirit manifesting these gifts. The purpose is for action toward the common good.
What a timely message. All of us are being called to acknowledge and give our rich spiritual gifts to build a more loving, just, and abundant world. While engaging in this endeavor does, as it should, bless our own lives, it sets our sights higher than personal improvement alone. We move beyond the idea of individual fame and fortune into Spirit’s vision of universal good. Mythologist Michael Meade writes that the root meaning of the word fame is, “to be seen clearly by a few people,” not, as we commonly use the term today to be superficially recognized by a large number of people. Meade maintains that it is this true seeing of our deep self that energizes us to give our much needed authentic gifts.
God has brought us into this time and place to be ourselves. God of course sees us clearly and knows deeply who we are. Most essentially, God loves us. Opening ourselves to God’s knowing reveals us to ourselves both through our own inner perceptions and through the love of God-aware people. Consider that you are more than you may know, and that with God’s love supporting you, you are ready to own your deep truth and give your gifts for the good of all.
In the Love and Light of the Christ,