Modern-day Christians love personality tests. Everybody’s trying to figure out everybody else. Right now, people are talking a lot about the Enneagram. Before that, it was StrengthsFinder. Wouldn’t it be great if we could answer a few questions, push a button, and know how to deal successfully with the people in our lives?
A few years back, all the adults in our family took the StrengthsFinder assessment and walked through the results with a certified coach. We learned a ton . . . about each other and ourselves. All six of us had at least one unique strength . . . one had Command, another Empathy, another Adaptability, a fourth Self-Assuredness. It was a cool and helpful experience for us.
But here was the big takeaway . . . it’s more accurate to call these talents than strengths.
Having a talent for something means you have a natural ability in that area. It takes focused effort, growth, and maturity for that talent to become a strength. The StrengthsFinder test points to areas of potential, not necessarily proficiency.
In The Gift, Lewis Hyde says, “creativity functions best when it’s treated like a gift.” I believe talents are gifts given to us by God. The happiest, healthiest see their talents as God-given gifts, developed through hard work and stewarded with care.
Author Leo Buscaglia said, “Our talents are the gift that God gives to us . . . What we make of our talents is our gift back to God.”
Everyone has at least one talent. We each have the opportunity to develop our God-given talents into skills and strengths that can be useful to us and for others.
So, what’s your potential superpower? Will you begin to ask God how you can turn that talent into a skill or strength that can help others and bring glory to the Father?
Scripture: As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 4:10-11)