Have you ever thought, ‘I would love to grow my spiritual gift of prophecy, or discernment, but I don’t have the opportunities?’
Or—have you ever felt that another person is holding you back from your ministry call? Perhaps you have been frustrated because a leader is not recognising your gift, or you don’t have a mentor to help you grow.
If you can relate to that, I have a significant word for you today.
“That Tree used to be a Bonsai”
One day we were visiting the home of a pastor and admiring his garden. Near his driveway was a magnificent, spreading tree. He said that one day that tree would grow so large that its foliage would hang over the driveway.
Then, he said an amazing thing: “That tree used to be a bonsai.”
In the Japanese art of bonsai, the small size of a container restricts the growth of a tree—it is a miniature of what it could be. The potential and the DNA exists for growth, but enlargement does not take place.
Why is my Prophetic Gift not Growing?
It is common for prophetic people with a ministry call to point to situations or people outside of ourselves as the reason for why we are not growing our gift, or progressing in our call the way we would like to. These include:
- Our church environment
- A pastor or leader
- A spouse or family member
- Lack of opportunities being given by others
- Lack of available mentors
And so the list goes on, as we point to some factor that we believe is limiting us and preventing us moving forward.
We see that factor as the ‘bonsai container’ that is stopping our growth. And so, we remain stuck.
If you can relate to that, I want to encourage you today to take a shift of perspective.
Is it possible that the real limitation is actually in your own thinking? That the mindset—that someone or something external to you is holding back your gift and ministry—is actually what is disempowering you?
I believe that Father is encouraging someone today:
In spite of what it may seem, no one can hold you back. No external environment can hold you back; no spouse, family member, leader or pastor can hold you back. You have the sovereignty and faithfulness of God on your side.
You do not need to be a victim. You do not need to remain in a stuck cycle. The only one who can neglect or limit your gift is you.
Fan into Flame the Gift of God
The truth is that we personally have been given the responsibility and the ability by God to steward our gift and calling:
- ‘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)
- ‘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. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.’ (2 Tim 1:6-7)
Paul holds Timothy personally responsible for the growth and stewardship of his gifts and ministry.
So today, decide to take ownership for the growth and development of your prophetic gift and you will be amazed at what takes place.
Prophets and Teachers
At a recent David McCracken Ministries team meeting, we sat around our table discussing the meaning of ‘Prophet’, studying Ephesians 4, and encouraging each other to grow further in our prophetic ministry.
I came away from that meeting feeling stretched, challenged and honoured. What a privilege to sit around the table with prophets and teachers who are spiritual family to me. What a privilege to minister on this team. I feel humbled and grateful.
Years ago, such an opportunity was only a dream. God in His grace has enabled me to make important choices along the way:
- To honour leaders, especially through the tough times
- To submit to the process of adjustment and repentance when necessary
- To serve in the small opportunities
- To embrace the seasons of life
- To step out of my comfort zone (obedience) when a door has opened up
- To decide—over and over—to steward the gifts God has given to me
I have not always got this right, but thank God He has enabled me to get up again after falling over. And these are choices that I must continue to make every day. Which are you currently faced with?
The Parable of the Talents—and Spiritual Gifts
Jesus told the story of a man who went on a journey and left his riches with others to invest. We call it ‘the parable of the talents’. (Matt 25:14-30) To one he gave five talents, to another two and to another one.
The responsibility to invest and grow that talent was left to the individual. And when he came back, the master looked to each person for the return on his investment.
The person to whom he gave one, failed to invest that talent, blaming a factor outside of himself—the temperament of his master—for his failure to multiply what had been given to him.
Those who were faithful to invest and grow the portion they were given, received more.
Today, decide that you are going to be like Timothy—you are going to fan into flame the gift that God has given to you. Nothing, and no one, can hold you back.
Which external factor have you been concerned has been holding you back in growing your gift? How has this article encouraged you to have a change of perspective? Leave a message in the comments section, on Facebook or on Instagram. If the blog comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.
How to Develop Your Prophetic Gift: Where to Begin
6 Reasons Why You Should Develop Your Prophetic Gift
Enliven Prophetic School: Take Your Prophetic Gift to the Next Level
The Enliven Prophetic School is now open!
This self-paced, video lecture school is for anyone who would like to learn and grow in the gift and ministry of prophecy and includes classes for discerners as well.
Modules currently include:
- Foundations of prophetic ministry
- How to hear God’s voice, begin and grow in prophecy
- The Seer gift: how to grow in pictures and visions
- Discernment and prophetic warnings: how to respond and share a prophetic warning
- Prophetic Guidance Master Class
- Bonus PDFs
You can currently join the prophetic training school for a small monthly subscription or make a single payment to join with no end date.
Visit the Enliven Prophetic School here.
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching
Enliven Ministries: A part of the David McCracken Ministries family
13 thoughts on “Break Out of Limitations and Grow Your Prophetic Gift”
That was an awesome word. The scriptures and word from the Lord really peel back the lies of life. I love that the Lord entrust us and we must act. Although it is a bit scary because we are responsible. For some reason I have believed in order to do anything I must be an “expert” or at least know “something”…but in my pursuit of knowing “something” it can become a perfectionist quest with less action than God wants. Thank you for sharing this word, the word that God’s gifts are dependant on us being faithful in the small things. I will examine and weigh my learning against what Christ is asking, praying for boldness to act and not just carry around my talents safely in a sack. You know, the place where they cannot get kicked, dusty, tarnished or lost…safely tucked away. God give those seeking it, boldness to entrust themselves with your talents and act knowing you are faithful where we step out to meet you in faith.
That is such a good word for those of us who are perfectionists, Samantha! (I relate to that). So true, we can tie up our gifts and hold back because we are waiting until the conditions are perfect and we are experts, but Father says, ‘begin where you are!’ Someone once said, ‘You don’t have to get it right, you just have to get it going!’
(By the way, I love the visual way you write, you have a great gift!)
Thanks Helen. Your word really spoke to me and has given me a new perspective. I do tend to at times look to the external to defend my lack of action… lack of opportunity, being overlooked. You reminded me that there are many opportunities available to steward my gift well. Maybe the opportunities are not what I expected or look how I want them to be, but they are there and it’s my responsibility to act in faith and put my gift to use. I agree with Samantha that “it’s a bit scary because we are responsible”. I just need to remember that when I am obedient and step through the door of opportunity God will meet me there. He is faithful. Thanks Helen… it has helped me immensely.
That’s wonderful, Melanie. As you step out of the comfort zone, led by the Holy Spirit, you will flourish and grow. May He breathe His courage into your heart.
The sky is the limit!
You are blessed and highly favoured (Luke 1:28)
Hello Helen Calder! I’m Victor Brito from Brazil. I have a translation ministry where I partner with ministries around the world to translate their online content into portuguese and share them free.
I’m so far partnering with @God’s Voice University, @Walk After Christ Ministry, @Ask Dr Brown Ministries, and @Robert Hotckin fromXP Ministries.
I would love to have the opportunity and the blessing to translate your content into portuguese and share them freely at our webpage. Would you consider partnering with us?
Here is our page: https://www.facebook.com/Leap-of-Faith-Translations-1608415192753200/timeline/
Hello Victor, yes I checked your Facebook page and you are doing a great job – I pray that it grows and reaches many!
You can share my articles provide you give the links to the original articles and clearly attribute them to me and ‘Enliven Blog.’ I see you are already doing that very well. All the best!
Thank you so much Helen! This is gonna bless the Brazilian church so much! God Bless you and your ministry!
Please permit me to ask a question. Is it correct to say that dream is a spiritual gift? I mean, is dream one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit? I understand that God can speak through dreams and He did speak through dreams in the Old Testament to both ungodly people (e.g. Abimelech and King Nebuchadnezzar) and godly people like Joseph and Daniel, but does that mean that dream is one of the spiritual gifts?
This question came up in my Church today during our Bible study, but we could not reach a conclusion in the Church.
I notice that dreams are not listed among the spiritual gifts in 1 Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4.
So, I thought I should ask you. I’d very much appreciate your insight regarding this question.
That’s a great question!
I personally believe that some people do have a specialist gift of prophetic dreams and interpretation – there are two ways of looking at this. 1. Classify it under the gift of prophecy (everyone with a spiritual gift has a unique, Spirit-endowed expression of that gift) or 2. See it as a unique gift in itself.
Some scholars take the lists of spiritual gifts in the NT as a ‘closed’ list that can’t be added to. However others see them as a starting point for the many gifts and expressions of the Holy Spirit, citing the fact that each list appearing in the NT has some different gifts. Wayne Grudem (Charismatic theologian), for example, defines a spiritual gift as ‘any ability that is empowered by the Holy Spirit and used in any ministry of the church.’ So it depends on which approach you take. 🙂
I was wondering the same thing about dreams is it a spiritual gift. I have been having lots of dreams over the years and some of them have came true. My mom gave me a journal and l write all my dreams down that l can remember with the dates. Once that dream comes true l put the date it came true and what the results was.
Hmm, that is a great advise for Helen to us that are coming up, nobody is responsible for our inefectivenes, we just need to change perception, and work on ourself.
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