Gifts Differing

Ordinary Time
January 21, 2018

Scripture Reading: Mark 1:14-20

As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’ And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him. –Mark 1:16-20

A friend and I were planning a trip recently.  I had left our last conversation thinking we had reached a decision on our plans and just needed to finalize the reservations and so forth. The first words out of her mouth when we met were that she had received an ad in the mail about a meeting on Sunday where several travel agencies would explore various ideas on vacations. My first response was to say I could not attend because I had a conflict, which was true, but my gut was reacting with thoughts that we did not need any more input. At that point, it dawned on me that her process orientation and my goal orientation were bumping heads. One is not better than the other; both are necessary for good decision making. I am referring to Myers Briggs personality types*. In a nutshell, these types include 16 combinations of eight opposite traits: Introvert/extrovert, sensing/intuitive, thinking/feeling, and goal oriented/process oriented. The idea is that all of these types are necessary for our world but by their very nature they can cause confusion and misunderstanding. Learning about the types builds better understanding of communication.

Have you ever wondered why Jesus selected the twelve disciples that he did? Why Paul carefully taught that there are different gifts and all are important? God created an interdependent world. Synergy ** results when two or more are gathered together to go about the business of doing God’s work. Our investment in learning from one another and learning how to work with one another is directly related to the success of our work in God’s service

Prayer: Creator God, give us insight and wisdom to complement each others talents and skills so they may be used to your glory. Amen.

*For more information see

**Briefly the total equals more than the sum of the parts.

All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights are reserved.