Sermon: Many Gifts/The Greatest Gift

“Many Gifts/The Greatest Gift”

(January 17, 2010) Much as I attempted a segue between the two– right about 12m30s if you’re looking for just the second half, this recording really contains two sermons, or one sermon and one ‘special comment.’

Each of us has a particular way in which we live out our spirituality, unique to us. We can, however, try to learn more about our spirituality type and so celebrate and strengthen who we are as spiritual people (rather than beating ourselves up for not being as spiritual as we think we should be!). Do you experience your faith with your thoughts and words, with your emotions, with your being, or with your actions? What are the things that move you and help you feel more connected to the Holy?*

Although there is no one right way to be a spiritual person, there are some wrong ways (like blaming victims of natural disasters for their plight), and there is one ‘greatest way,’ the way or the gift of love. This past week, we have seen powerful examples of those who gave the greatest gift, some of them with their lives, and we give thanks to God for their love and witness.** (1 Corinthians 12:1-11)


*The tool I’m inviting my congregations to use to reflect upon their spirituality types comes from Discover Your Spirituality Type by Corrine Ware. Her work (particularly not the inventory of questions) is not reproduced anywhere online that I can point you to, but a couple of places have some resources based on her model, which may help illustrate what I’m describing. I will not, however, upload the specific tool I am giving the congregations, to protect Ms. Ware’s intellectual property.

**In my comments I mention the death toll in Haiti as 50,000, which was the American Red Cross estimate as of Sunday morning. Since then, especially since the likelihood of finding survivors has been drastically reduced, that estimate has at least doubled or tripled. Likewise, the confirmed North American victims have increased in number since Saturday night. Finally, I mention volunteer Jean Arnwine of Dallas, TX and Rev. Sam Dixon, head of the United Methodist Committee on Relief, having lost their lives. They were joined on Sunday by Rev. Clinton Rabb, leader of the United Methodist Church’s volunteer programing, who was in the same hotel as Rev. Dixon, meeting to discuss health care in Haiti. Rev. Rabb was rescued from the rubble on Friday, but passed away Sunday as a result of his injuries.

3 thoughts on “Sermon: Many Gifts/The Greatest Gift”

  1. Becca,

    There is another place that offers a spirituality type test at Upper Room — as Corinne Ware worked off of Urban Holmes, the author (Helen Neinast, a former campus minister at Emory University) stands on the shoulders of Ware. Upper Room offers a small digital book of Neinast for for $10, that summarizes and expands on many of Ware’s points.

    I have been a student of Ware’s work for almost 10 years — not diligent, as a Type 1 spirituality type might explore it, but more picking it up and putting it down, as it finds me in my current life, which is truer to my Type 3-ish self.

    I’m considering writing a concluding paper — a capstone of my 3-year course toward becoming certified as a spiritual director — to explore how the use of Ware’s tool based on Holmes typology might help spiritual directors in their daily listening practices — directly and indirectly.

    I’m still weighing options for the paper — but the topic ‘feels’ right.

    I keep a blog on WordPress as well — I write my life, and as I do, I see evidence of an “Everyday God” in it. Feel free to drop by anytime — I enjoyed my visit here.


    1. Thanks for commenting, Janell, and for the information! Good luck with your paper– it does sound like a good topic.

      Blessings, and I’ll swing by your blog too and check it out!


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