As a Pastor and having worked in Christian Television for over 30 years I am used to criticism. People, even Christians, can say the vilest and most vicious things when part of their lives are not yet sanctified. However, that is nothing compared to where I come under the harshest criticism. No one can criticize me as severely as I can do to myself! Paul recognized that in many believers and the Holy Spirit spoke this through him.
"the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus." Philemon 1:6
I used to be extremely critical of myself, never being satisfied with anything I had accomplished or the quality of my gifts and talents. As I matured and my attentiveness to the Holy Spirit increased I began to understand I was grieving the Holy Spirit by my actions. He began to reveal to me that my criticism of myself was actually criticizing the Holy Spirit's gift and work in me.
Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is saying, we become more effective when we acknowledge every good thing. What does that have to do with what I just said about being critical? Our faith becomes "active", "alive", "energized" by us. God has already given us faith, but until we decide we are going to begin to acknowledge that every good thing we have came from God, our faith doesn't have life breathed into it. I may have the best computer in the world, I own it (of course it is an Apple product) but until I turn it on it is useless to me. My computer has all kinds of potential but until it is turned on none of that potential can be realized.
You and I have been given every good thing, salvation, relationship with Jesus, and for many of us, the in-filling of the Holy Spirit. Yet rather than being thankful for what we have been given, we complain, put our gifts on the shelf as being somewhat common or ordinary and don't acknowledge them for what they are, fabulous gifts to impact our world.
You might be saying, "I don't feel like any of that is true in my life." Feelings have nothing to do with it. It takes faith activated to begin to believe that you have been given wonderful gifts, talents, abilities, the perfect personality to accomplish God's plan for your life and everything else you need to fulfill your destiny. Stop thinking what you have been given is common or ordinary. Stop being critical of who you are and what you have learned and understand that will fulfill your destiny. Activate your faith! Bring life to it by looking at who you are as a gift from God. Stop being so critical of yourself, begin to be thankful for all the "good things!" Walk in freedom today!
Want to do double duty? Help others to realize how valuable they are. Encourage them in their blessings of the gifts, talent, personality, and all those "good things" we have been given. They have been given so we can help to change our world.