The Squeaky Duck Saga - Assorted Spiritual Gifts, Individually Styled

Go after a life of love as if your life depended on it—because it does. Give yourselves to the gifts God gives you. Most of all, try to proclaim his truth. 1 Corinthians14:1 (The Message) (Emphasis mine)

School fundraisers! I really dislike them. Not because I don’t want to support my child’s school, but because I would just rather give a donation instead of placing an order for something I really don’t want or need.

Also, I really do not care for the motivational tactics presented to the kids – prizes they can earn with the more they sell! UGH!

Recently, my son’s school did a fundraiser and they enticed the students to sell by offering little 2-inch size squeaky ducks. Oh, they were cute…with various themes…ideal for trading with friends.

We were nearly late for school on more than one occasion because we had to find the squeaky ducks so that my son could trade that day. My friend even turned around and went back home one morning because her daughter forgot her squeaky ducks!

Then, the unthinkable happened! My son lost his chain of squeaky ducks one Wednesday evening, somewhere between our house and church. He was so upset, mostly because he wanted to trade one of his ducks for a different duck, a dinosaur duck the next day.

So like a good mom, I retraced our steps the next morning…the restaurant, the church parking lot, every lost and found on our very large church campus.

But to no avail, I did not find the squeaky ducks.

However, my son came home happy because he traded two of his brand new mechanical pencils for the duck he had anticipated.

Meanwhile, he learned that he could purchase even more of these themed squeaky ducks online…he even used some of his Christmas money to buy most of them – sports ducks, fairy tale ducks, dog ducks, farmer ducks, pirate ducks, safari ducks…I even ordered some luau ducks to place by my bathtub!

Almost every type of duck imaginable was available. There were 3 or more in a set…or so we thought!

Every day after school he couldn’t wait to check the mail. Each day he asked if his ducks had arrived.

Finally, it happened! The doorbell rang. The mailman had set a box on our front porch. I was puzzled, however, because the box looked a little small to have all those sets of themed ducks that we had long awaited.

Hmmmmm. I hurriedly opened the box. To my dismay I soon discovered that we had not received all of the ducks. After sending an email to the company, and taking a second look at their website, I discovered my mistake!

There it was in the fine print…Priced or sold individually. Assorted styles (cannot guarantee style.)

Lovely! We had picked one duck out of each theme. We could have, instead, invested in more ducks within the same theme. Then we would have ended up with a real collection.

Unfortunately, because we spent so much time and effort choosing only one of many different themes of ducks, we were left with a whole lotta nothin’!

The same could be true of my spiritual gifts…Do I spend my time investing in things that are really not my style? Or am I concentrating my efforts on practicing the gift or talent that God gave me?

Am I fulfilling my God-given purpose? Or am I spending too much time and effort dabbling in different themes and comparing myself to others and their spiritual gifts?

I love the way The Message translates Romans 12:6: “So since we find ourselves fashioned into all these excellently formed and marvelously functioning parts in Christ's body, let's just go ahead and be what we were made to be, without enviously or pridefully comparing ourselves with each other, or trying to be something we aren't.”

In How to Reach Your Full Potential for God, Charles Stanley writes, “Let me remind you that your potential lies in the arena of your God-given giftedness. Unless you are fully in the flow of what the Lord has created and authorized you to do, you cannot and will not succeed at accomplishment anything of value or eternal benefit.”

I don’t know about you, but I want to find my spiritual theme or my niche and invest in it. Practice it. Use it for God’s glory.

I don’t want to end up at the end of my life with a whole lotta nothin’!

Lord, show me which spiritual gifts You have for me and how that You desire for me to invest my time and energy for Your glory. Forgive me when I have wasted my efforts on things that are not my gifts and not Your will for my life. Or even when I’ve even secretly wished that I could trade my gift for someone else’s. I praise You because You have created me as a unique individual and that You have a very specific plan for my life during my time on this earth. Help me to accomplish Your will for my life!

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