A Checklist For Developing Your Spiritual Gifts

Develop your Spiritual Gifts‘Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you. Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.’ (1 Tim 4:14-15, see also 2 Tim 1:6)

Paul makes it clear through his instruction to Timothy that each of us has the ability to stir up a spiritual gift, or to neglect it.

That is a sobering thought!

The Bible reminds us that we have a responsibility before God to be intentional about using and developing the spiritual gifts He has invested in us.

7 Ways to Develop your Spiritual Gift

Here is a checklist of actions that you can take to develop your spiritual gifts. This includes prophecy, or any other gift such as leadership, discernment, teaching, intercession or healing. [1]

To make this exercise practical, rate how you are going out of 10 for each one and ask the question, what can I do to improve in this area?

1. I have acknowledged that I have a gift

Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy. (1 Cor 14:1)

Many people hold back from acknowledging a spiritual gift because they mistakenly believe that standing back is the humble thing to do, or they still have doubts as to whether they really have a gift.

However if God has put a gift or ministry on your heart, even if it hasn’t fully manifested, be honest and begin the development process.

In the early stages, your stewardship is primarily of the desire or call God has given to you. Don’t under-value this. Be obedient to the Holy Spirit and take the first steps to learn about the gift.

You will never grow in a gift if you do not admit you have one—or at least disclose that you have a God-given desire for it.

2. I am in the environment of a local church

‘And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.’ (1 Cor 12:28)

The place to use and develop your spiritual gift is in the context of Christian community—church life. Gifts are given to help grow the church, whether through evangelism or through ministry to the church body.

We were never meant to be ‘lone rangers’, but part of the church body, interdependent upon each other. (1 Cor 12-14)

3.  I am making the most of resources available

There are many great resources and materials available to help you grow in your spiritual gift. Look for reputable books, online resources, e-books, conferences and local training to help you grow in your gift.

There are many perspectives in the world today—and not all of them are healthy. So the best way to use resources is in conjunction with accountability to a leader or mentor who can help you select the best materials and process what you are learning.

4. I have a sense of passion and purpose

It is not enough just to know that you have a spiritual gift. You also have to identify and nurture the purpose that God has given you to use it. This is your sense of motivation, your mission.

It is the ‘because’ of your gift.

  • ‘I pray because…’
  • ‘I teach because…’

As time goes on, that sense of passion becomes focused.

For example, my own big ‘because’—my all-consuming passion—is souls: a lost generation in need of salvation. As years have gone by, my focus is on helping raise up a generation of contagious, ‘supernatural’ Christians who will reach people for Jesus because their lives look like Jesus.

My passion and vision is global. Yours may relate to your family, your church, a specific group, a region, and so on.

Teaching and prophetic ministry is for me, a means to an end. What is your ‘end’?

5. I am using my spiritual gift regularly

The way to develop a gift is to use it, not to shelve it.

We all have to start somewhere small. My writing ministry began with writing newsletters to our family’s mission supporters. My prophetic ministry began with reaching to God for words of encouragement whilst praying for people at altar calls.

If you have a teaching gift, your ministry is not going to start at the pulpit, Look for small ways to get activated—for example taking devotions with your family, or offering to take a study in your small group.

It is time to stop holding back.

6. I am accountable in the use of my gift

No one ever outgrows the need for accountability to oversight in the use of a spiritual gift or ministry.

When asked, ‘To whom are you accountable to in the use of your gift?’ what is your answer?

I have a great source of accountability through David McCracken Ministries. In the past my accountability has included elders, pastors and prayer leaders. These are people who have instructed me and loved me enough to correct me or give me tips to help me grow in my spiritual gifts.

Accountability does not create a ‘ceiling’; it explodes it! I know that the sky is the limit in my call with God as long as I have a heart attitude to submit to and learn from those He has placed around me.

We can learn not only from those to whom we are accountable, but from peers and outsiders as well. We need to foster a life-long attitude of learning from others in our gifts and ministries.

7. I am persevering through the tough times

‘For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.’ (2 Tim 1:6)

We all go through difficult times and wilderness seasons in the development of our spiritual gifts.

If you can relate to this today, may I encourage you—keep pressing forward. Your Heavenly Father has a plan in the midst of your trial and He is faithful.

Grow Your Prophetic and Prayer Gifts – eBook

Prophetic and Prayer GiftsIf you are feeling stuck, or have undergone hardship in relation to your prophetic or prayer gift, including prophecy, discernment, intercession and healing, this book will encourage you and provide you with keys to move forward in developing your gift.

Grow Your Prophetic And Prayer Gifts is filled with practical tips, inspiration and advice to assist you in developing your spiritual gifts.

In this book, you will discover the six phases of development of prophetic and prayer gifts from desire and birth through to maturity.

Learn how to:

  • Identify the season you are currently in for each of your gifts, including a season of wilderness and trial. Find out how to break through to the next level
  • Maximise opportunities in the current stage of growth in your spiritual gift
  • Navigate the challenges and joys unique to the growth of prophetic and prayer gifts
  • Each chapter includes questions for personal reflection and group discussion.

This book includes practical tools and the information you need to develop a plan for the next stage of growth in your spiritual gift.

Review and purchase Grow Your Prophetic and Prayer Gifts here.

(124 pages. Available for download in either PDF or ePub formats)

Note: All transactions are secure using PayPal and we do not pass your information on to third parties. Prices are listed in Australian dollars, but our store will convert to your currency.


[1] Some articles that may help you in the following gifts:

Prophecy: How To Develop Your Prophetic Gift Pt 1: Where To Begin

Discernment: 8 Ways To Grow Your Gift Of Discernment

Intercession: 8 Tips for Personal Intercessors

© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

Enliven Ministries: in the David McCracken Ministries family

14 thoughts on “A Checklist For Developing Your Spiritual Gifts”

  1. i like your blog, easy to read but has great in-depth contents.
    May God bless you and use this site to grow all who are hungry for more of God into maturity

    1. Hi and thanks, Alex. Yes and amen, that is my vision, to provide empowering material that will help grow and equip Christians, to be all God has called them to be!
      Have a blessed week 🙂

  2. There are reasons for lone ranger prophetic ministries. Have eyes that actually do see and ears that really do hear from God can put a prophetic ministry at odds with church leadership. If a prophet has to shut his eyes and wear a muzzle to maintain some sort of fellowship with the local church, such fellowship isn’t worth the effort.

  3. Hi Ron, thank you for leaving the note.
    It is true that there are occasional situations in which a church or church leadership is unhealthy, or there is abuse that could cause estrangement of a prophetic person.
    However, prophetic ministers in the NT are clearly meant to exercise their gifts in the context of community.
    Personally, I think that if there is a continual pattern of someone with a prophetic gift or ministry becoming at odds with church leadership, (i.e. can’t find a local church to settle into) something is not right.
    The following posts could help when hurts have occurred:

    1. Hi Dawn, unfortunately I don’t know of any books personally in this area – but I have received very helpful training at a Healing School with Randy Clark and Bill Johnson, it’s possible they have materials that can help you.

  4. Cameron Patterson

    Hi Helen, I was wanting to ask a few questions I am unsure about.
    First, just to let you know, I am 13. I was wondering if my age limits my spiritual gifts and how powerful they can be. (I have been baptized). Second, I had been attending a church that (believe it or not) hadn’t taught our youth about spiritual gifts. My family moved and has been having a bible study and one of the lessons was about spiritual gifts. This intruiged me so I dived into the word to study. I read and researched about a lot of gifts but the most intruiging one to me was the gift of discernment of spirits. After reading about this, it took me a while but I sat down at the prayer room in our home and prayed and prayed and prayed to ask God to give me wisdom and understanding about these gifts. After a while, I read more in the bible about the gifts and decided that I wasn’t at a place in my life that I was actually making a difference in God’s kingdom. So I decided that I wanted to ask God to bless me with a spiritual gift. Particularly the gift of discernment of spirits. I belive that God has oppened my eyes to more opportunities to benifit his kingdom but im not so sure that i “qualified” for a spiritual gift (given that im only 13). It had been about 2 days since i asked god to bless me with that gift and i havent had any signs to make me 100% absolutely sure that i have the ability to discern. How long does it usually take for one to be sure of his gift after it has been requested ( if it was ever granted)?
    I just hope that u are avalible to get back to me in a reply answering some of my concerns.
    Thanks, God Bless

    1. Hi Cameron,
      it’s great to hear from you.
      Firstly, your prayer is a good one. The Bible encourages us to desire spiritual gifts.
      Age is certainly not a barrier to receiving spiritual gifts from God. I was your age when I was baptised in the Holy Spirit and soon afterwards began to share prophetic insights.
      It can take a longer time in our journey to clarify the specific gifts we have received, so don’t worry if you can’t tell straight away.
      Here’s a great place to start – just by loving people and watching out for opportunities to do good, and encourage and serve. Focus on that, and hearing from God and Bible study, rather than seeking a specific gift, and you will find that God directs you and highlights the gifts as you go along.
      Thanks for leaving the comment!

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