Gainfully Employed!

1 Corinthians 12:7 NKJV

“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all:”
Have you ever wondered why you are able to do what you do? Have you ever asked yourself why you have the talents that you have? Let me ask you this; are your gifts and talents for your enjoyment, or your employment?

The manifestation of the Spirit Paul is talking about in 1 Corinthians chapter 12 references the varied gifts, talents and abilities given by the one God who is Lord of all. He lists the manifestation of some of those gifts; the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, faith, ability of healing, working of miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, different kinds of tongues, and interpretation of tongues.

Paul suggests that gifts are given liberally with the express intent of being used to bless others. As you examine this brief list of gifts, you will see that each one, wisdom, knowledge, healing, miracles, prophecy, discernment, speaking and interpreting tongues (languages) are all great internal gifts that are birthed on the inside (of us), but are only of benefit when they are demonstrated on the outside. They were given to you to pass through you.

I recently had a real-life experience of this internal gift that is only of benefit when it is externalized. This weekend, I attended a fund raiser for a homeless, but gifted artist, Michael Bailey. Michael is an exceptional artist who draws and paints sports and entertainment celebrities. He envisions them in his mind, but until he puts pen, pencil, or brush to canvas, he is the only one who is blessed by his gift. However, once he expresses his inspiration on paper, the world is a better place because his gifts were given for his employment, not his enjoyment. That is an oxymoron because his employment is his enjoyment. When Michael is painting, drawing, and putting on canvass what he has in his spirit, in his own words, “time stands still, and I am in my own world.”

Michael is the living example of someone who is gainfully employed even though he has no roof over his head, a bed of his own, or a table to dine. I suggest that each of us take a long look at Michael Bailey, and reconsider what it means to be gainfully employed.

Be Blessed!

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at Goodwill Baptist Church and is the spiritual leader of the Evangelical Church of God, both in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company/J Loren R Consulting, LLC for Church Financial & Strategic Consulting (718-328-8096) and is the producer and host of “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Monday nights from 8:00 – 10:00 PM on Facebook Live. Be sure to ‘Friend’ the Matters of Faith YouTube Channel. Email us at Order your copy of Matters of Faith: The eBook at

Print Friendly, PDF & Email