Ephesians 4:11 – The gifts he gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers. (NRSV)
I saw Paul's words to the church at Ephesus literally demonstrated in real twenty-first century life today, with full colour and complete sound. It seems to me that our Scripture, roughly paraphrased, says, "God ain't created nobody to do nothing! He has a job for each person." We may claim to be the wrong gender, the wrong age, or born on the wrong side of the tracks, or we may use one of a few dozen other excuses to avoid meeting the requirements of the job, but Paul says that Jesus ascended so that He might fill us with the gifts, which he then lists in today's verse. I'm convinced that if Paul were writing today, his list would be much longer.
The demonstration of this verse came while I watched with great interest as a concrete company poured the driveway for my neighbour's house. It was a work of art. Each worker had a job to do, and he did it. Each did not worry about the work of his friend. He did his own work. One man guided the cement chute from the truck. He moved it so that exactly the right amount of cement got to every area of the new driveway. Two men used cement hoes to semi-level the fresh cement. Another man followed with a straightedge that reached across the driveway, thus allowing him to level the cement. Still another followed with a long-handled (18-20 feet) trowel that reached all the way across the driveway without his having to walk in the wet cement, so he could put a nice pre-finish on the driveway.
We may be young or old. We may be rich or living on a meagre income. We may be female or male. God has a place for us in the work of His kingdom that will bless and enrich our lives. If we are physically handicapped, what an opportunity to do our work as prayer team members!
Prayer: O God, every one of us has a place in Your kingdom's work. Help us all to find our places. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.