Updated: Dec 22, 2021
Today we’re going to talk about getting your family in SHAPE. I’m not taking about a workout routine here. I’m going to give you some spiritual meat to chew on (not milk) to build spiritual muscle. We’re going to go to the biblical gym and get pumped up on the word of God and get strong in how God has created each family member uniquely different for his kingdom.
Peter said in 1 Corinthians 3:1-3 “Brothers and sisters, I could not address you as people who live by the Spirit but as people who are still worldly—mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly.”
The bible also says in 1 Corinthian’s 12:27 says “Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” This means that you are a part of the body of Christ and God has shaped each family member and church family member uniquely different with unique gifts, unique passions, unique abilities, unique personalities and unique experiences to do things that others - can’t do.
It’s like our physical bodies. The ear can’t do what the nose does. The hand can’t do what the foot does but they are all are important to the functioning of a physical body right?
The same with your family and the body of Christ. You can’t do what I do and I can’t do what you do. You are a ‘One of a Kind’. You and each one of you family members are special and important to the functioning of the body of Christ. God shaped you and each one of your family members for a life of significance by serving those in need using your gifts, your leadership, and your purpose.
I’m going to use the acronym S.H.A.P.E. to hopefully help you see how God has uniquely shaped each one of us his Kingdom.
S - Spiritual Gifts
The first letter in SHAPE is “S”and it represents your ‘Spiritual Gifts’. 1 Corinthians 7:7 says “Each one has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.” So, all of us have spiritual gifts, we just have to find out what they are.
What are some spiritual gifts that we could have? There’s a whole list of them in the bible; things like Administration, Apostleship, Craftsmanship, Creativity, Communication, Discernment, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith, Giving, Serving, Hospitality, and a whole lot more.
How can you find out what your Spiritual Gifts are? I have a spiritual gifts assessment tool that I use or you could go online and google ‘Spiritual Gifts Test, Assessment, or Inventory’ and take an online test and get your results immediately.
When I took my assessment using my Spiritual Gifts Assessment, the highest score that you could get is a 21. I got a 21 out of 21 in ‘Administration’. That means I like to plan and organize. Another high score was in teaching. Guess what? I’ve been a teacher for many years and I love to plan and organize lessons like this and then teach them. Who would have thought, huh?
H - Heart
Now the “H” in SHAPE is your ‘Heart’ or in other words, ‘your ‘Passion’. Revelation 17:17 says “God has put it into their hearts to accomplish His purpose. . .” Psalm 37:4 says “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” So, what are you excited about? What do you love doing, What are you good at? What gets you out of bed in the morning? Whatever your answer is, that’s your heart or passion.
For me, I have a heart for biblical truth and the family. That’s what this website is all about; honoring families by strengthening marriages, parents, men, teens and children through Biblical principles. I absolutely love it. I have nothing to share but through Christ I do and hopefully some families will receive help and hope through the Badge of Honor - Family Ministries and Presentations.
I also have a heart or passion to add value to others. I want to be an encouragement and build others up. Someone once said that when you get down to lift others up, you actually lift yourself up in the process. I love to serve and help others. It gives a feeling of purpose and accomplishment when I do. I pray that the content in Badge of Honor lifts, adds value, encourages and builds you up also.
A - Abilities
The “A” is for ‘Abilities.' 1 Corinthians 12:6 says “There are different abilities to perform service. . .” What are some of your abilities? Do you like to write? speak? Fix things? Design? Act?Do you like to draw or create? photography? audio/visual? counseling? computers? accounting? music? and there’s much more.
I have a creative or artistic side. Doing this ministry allows me to create content that might help people. I’m also artistic and love to draw for my own enjoyment. What do you enjoy doing?
P - Personality
“P” is for ‘Personality!’ 1 Corinthians 2:11 says “No one can really know what anyone else is thinking or what he or she is really like, except that person himself.” How do you see yourself? Are you reserved or outgoing? Are you a fact finder or do you go on your gut feelings? Are you dependent on others or are you independent? Are you determined or are you spontaneous?
We all have have unique and differing personalities. My personality connects more easily with certain people and not so much with others. Your personality connects with people that I can’t. That’s why each one of you are needed in the body of Christ so that we can reach everyone for Christ.
Growing up, my teachers and friends saw me as quite reserved and quiet. In college, I skipped my speech class so I wouldn’t have to give a speech in front of my peers. After I failed my first speech, I mustered up the strength to give my speeches so that I wouldn’t fail my speech class.
Did you know that number 1 fear for most people is public speaking? Number 2 is death. That means most people would rather be the person in the casket than the person giving the eulogy. Just kidding, just kidding.
Some people see me as outgoing but for those that know me growing up see me as more reserved. I do come out of my shell if the situation appeals to my heart or passion and I have an opportunity to add value to others. But you know what, to God, it doesn’t matter. He uses all of our unique personalities for His purposes.
E - Experiences
The final letter in SHAPE is “E” for ‘Experiences’. Romans 8:28 says “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him and have been called according to his purpose”. God has allowed each one of us to go through differing experiences to learn and to grow and are used for God’s good and His purposes.
For example, what was your journey to becoming a Christ follower? What experiences have you been through that God has taught you lessons that you could share with others. What painful experiences have you had that God has used to test and grow your faith.
I hit a motorcyclist when I was 17 years old with my car. I thought I had killed him. Thank God, he only broke his leg. I’m sure most of you reading this have never hit a motorcyclist with your car. That is a personal experience that I’ve gone through and God has used it in my life.
Consider It Pure Joy
I love James 1:2-4. It’s one of my life verses. It says “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
That doesn’t mean “Wow! This is great!! I hit a motorcyclist, sent him to the hospital, totaled my car, and am being sued for $100,000. Isn’t this great? This versed says that I should find pure joy when going through trials of many kinds. Yippee!!”
No, that isn’t what the verse means at all. It means “This really stinks that I hit this motorcyclist. But, God can use it to test my faith and build perseverance inside of me. After I get through with all of it, God will mature me and complete me. And that’s where the joy will come from.”
Trials are Like Manure?
Our trials are a lot like manure. Manure stinks right? But when you put manure on plants, manure can help plants grow right? The same thing with trials. God can use the trials in our life to help us grow, if we let them.
Get in SHAPE!
It’s time for you and your family to get into S.H.A.P.E. God has shaped each one of you through your S - Spiritual Gifts, your H - Heart or Passions, your A - Abilities, your P - Personality and your E - Experiences. In the times that we live in today, it’s important that we all get in shape so that God can use all of us to make a difference changing our world. Time to pump some iron.