RHYTHM: This is Wisdom – 1 Corinthians 1

Lectionary for youth ministry 1 corinthians 1Tuesday of Holy Week: 1 Corinthians 1:18-31

Reading: 1 Corinthians 1:18-31

This is Wisdom

As a youth, I took countless versions of what are known as “spiritual gift inventories,” long- or short-form profiles where by answering a series of questions, your natural gifts for ministry are revealed. I never fully knew what to make of them then; mostly I remember hoping I wouldn’t get healing.

Over and over throughout my life in the church when I’ve taken those I find wisdom and knowledge fighting for dominance near the top of my list, one topping the other based on how I overanalyzed the questions that time around. When I was still a youth, I’d always ask, “What’s the difference between those?” only to receive insufficient replies from whichever leader was there reading off a piece of paper. Two gifts, poorly defined.

I’m a big fan of personality profiles—DISC, Enneagram, recently the Birkman Method. Whenever I lead youth leadership retreats, I try to incorporate both. I’ll usually start with a basic personality profile—this is your fullest expression if you never engage God in life. Then I would do the spiritual gifts assessment, showing that when we live faith-filled lives, we have an opportunity to funnel who we are individually into expressions of faith.

For me, the distinction between wisdom and faith eventually came down to this: knowledge is life well observed. Wisdom is life well expressed. I’ve observed tons about faith, life, and scripture. But if I use that to beat up, oppress, or undermine the faith of someone else, it becomes foolishness. If I can remember to use what I’ve observed to help others deepen their own faith, then suddenly I have wisdom.

Wisdom is knowledge made excellent.

For reflection:

What have you learned about your own personality or even spiritual gifts?


RHYTHM is a daily lectionary devotion series in development by Youthworker Circuit. YWC members also receive weekly curriculum sessions for Sunday’s readings. To subscribe to Youthworker Movement, click here. If you’re new to us, you might like to know more about RHYTHM. You’re also welcome to check out more of our devotions, or come visit us on Facebook!