In writing, particularly in journalism, one of the first things people learn is how to answer the six basic questions for a good story: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? If you can answer these six questions, you’ll have a decent story.
We apply these questions to our lives all the time, because they’re useful questions to ask when we need information, from simple things like, “What time is it?” to the really hard questions like, “Why does air exist?”
These questions can also be important for us to ask ourselves when and if we consider our gifts and how we can use them to bless others. The questions can be boiled down to these six (you may have variants of them, and that’s perfectly okay):
1. WHO would be blessed by my gifts?
2. WHAT are my gifts?
3. WHERE will I be called upon to use my gifts?
4. WHEN will I be called upon to use my gifts?
5. WHY would a particular person need to be blessed?
6. HOW can I use my gifts to be a blessing to someone?
The easiest question to answer here is probably Number 2, the “What” question. From there, the answers to “Who” and “How” may follow. Most times, though, these are not easy questions to answer, because unless we receive a direct tip from God – which can happen – we cannot know beforehand who needs to be blessed, when or where we will be called upon to put our gifts to use, why a particular person needs to be blessed, or how to go about doing all of this. These questions are usually answered only after the event has happened, and it all comes together in that light bulb inspiration moment.
While it’s comforting to know that God doesn’t require us to have every gift, the knowledge that we have these gifts carries with it a great responsibility – a responsibility to be at the ready to use our gifts to bless others. And in so doing, we ourselves will be blessed.
Lord, we have questions. You have the answers. Help us to discern the answers to these questions and use this knowledge to be a blessing to others. Amen.