Tuesday, June 17, 2008

What Percentage of the Church has what Spiritual Gifts? (Corrected)

Below is a corrected version of a previous post on this subject.

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I have been working on Spiritual gifts discovery, development and application now for nearly three years, and it is a part of my doctoral work. I so strongly believe in this ministry, both from a missional theological standpoint as well as a practical standpoint. The Spirit is often compared to water--fluid, changing, refreshing, at work, essential to life, and uncontrollable. Still, I am excited about the discoveries that are coming to light as I do more and more research in this area.

One question I have often had is, what percentage of a church has what Spiritual gifts. How does it vary from church to church? Is it affected by the preaching and teaching that is done there? For instance, will people who are in a church with an evangelistic culture be influenced by this and see themselves as being more evangelistic? Is this a psychological influence or a Spiritual one--or are these too closely related to differentiate? Are there generational differences in gifts distribution? How much do different fellowship experiences affect these results? How about education level? Number of years a person is a Christian? And I have many more questions. It is exciting to think about knowing some of these results with a few more years of research.We have collected 55 Spiritual gifts inventories so far at High Pointe, with many more in the works. I thought I would take a snapshot of the gifts distribution at High Pointe so far.

Percentage of Each Gift as Compared to the Total Number of Spiritual Gifts Reported
3% - Administration – Coordination of People & Projects
7% - Administration – Tasks
1% - "Apostolic" / Missional Leadership
3% - Discernment
9% - Encouragement
4% - Evangelism
13% - Faith
4% - Giving
8% - Helping
5% - Hospitality
5% - Knowledge
4% - Leadership
7% - Mercy
3% - Pastoral Care / Shepherding
4% - Prayer
1% - Prophetic Ministry
6% - Service
2% - Speaking
6% - Teaching
6% = Wisdom

Percentage of People Who Have a Particular Gift at High Pointe
16% - Administration (Coordination)
39% - Administration (Tasks)
7% - "Apostolic"/Missional Leadership
16% - Discernment
50% - Encouragement
20% - Evangelism
77% - Faith
23% - Giving
48% - Helping
30% - Hospitality
27% - Knowledge
25% - Leadership
39% - Mercy
16% - Pastoral Care/Shepherding
23% - Prayer
5% - Prophetic Ministry
34% - Service
9% - Speaking
36% - Teaching
34% -Wisdom

These results are very interesting. For instance, these numbers confirm a very high percentage at High Pointe report a gift of faith. What are the implications of this as we plan our ministries, goals, and missional outreach? I plan on comparing these numbers over time, as well as comparing them to the Liberty Church of Christ, where I was previously a minister. These numbers also have a high percentage of church leaders who have taken the survey, which probably tilts the numbers towards certain gifts.

What do you think of these numbers? Is there anything that stands out in your mind, is surprising, etc.? What implications does this have for ministry at High Pointe and in the church at large?

2 comments:

Becca said...

I find it refreshing to see that 'faith' is at the top of the list at High Pointe. In Truth, faith is not generated by ourselves. We all who are in Christ, have this faith. Some of us are more aware and cognizant of it's presence in our lives than others. I think as we mature in the faith we become more in tune to this.

This high number, 77%, shows me that we may have a group of people who are more in tune and aware of the presence of Faith (God Himself) in and around our lives than maybe the general christian population. Or, at least I hope so.... Ultimately, this can only conclude that GOOD things will happen for all of us who love God, especially when we are aware and are looking.

I'm looking now and...I can see.

James said...

Becca,

Thank you for your thoughts. Faith, as you say, is itself a gift from God. We can resist God's gifts, and therefore faith is also a choice. But in our efforts not to be "calvanistic," we should not ignore the fact that God helps us in trusting in him.

I too think that the high percentage of those with faith as a gift at High Pointe may indicate much positive potential. It may mean that if we venture out upon a godly path, many people will follow, trusting that God will be us.