A Devotion for the First Sunday in June
“To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” (1 Corinthians 12:7)
Martin Buber, a Jewish theologian, had a wonderful definition of humility. He said that humility consists of two parts.
First, humility recognizes that each of us is unique, unlike anyone else in the world: “Every [one] shall know and consider that in [their] qualities [they are] unique in the world and that none like [them] ever lived, for had there ever before been someone like [them], then [they] would not have needed to exist.” So, our goal is to accomplish that which we have been uniquely gifted to do.
Second, humility recognizes that we realize our giftedness only as we practice and live it out within the world of other uniquely-gifted people. “In each [one] there is a priceless treasure that is in no other. Therefore, one shall honor each [one] for the hidden value that only [they] and none of [their] comrades has.”
Paul says the same thing in 1 Corinthians 12 when he reminds the community that everyone is given a different gift through the Spirit. But we are called to realize these gifts and manifest these gifts “for the common good,” realizing them with what we can do together.
What an empowering and challenging insight! I am empowered, because I know that I have a unique purpose with the way that God made me. I am challenged, because I realize that God made everybody else with their own unique purpose. This body only works when we move together and work together.
God, thank you for making me the way I am. Help me to discover my gifts and use my gifts for the common good. Help me realize that everybody else is equally gifted and that we all must work together for your Kingdom. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Pastor David Armstrong-Reiner