Beacon Media Professional development for teachers Session 16 Motivational Gifts The Power Point presentation can be found at


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Professional development for teachers
Session 16

Motivational Gifts

The Power Point presentation can be found at: – Professional development for teachers

adapted from

Motivational gifts
Romans 12: 4-8
Each one of us has a body, and that body has many parts. These parts all have different uses. In the same way, we are many, but in Christ we are all one body. Each one is a part of that body. And each part belongs to all the other parts. We all have different gifts. Each gift came because of the grace that God gave us.
If one has the gift of prophecy, he should use that gift with the faith he has.

If one has the gift of serving, he should serve.

If one has the gift of teaching, he should teach.

If one has the gift of encouraging others, he should encourage.

If one has the gift of giving to others, he should give freely.

If one has the gift of being a leader, he should try hard when he leads.

If one has the gift of showing kindness to others, that person should do so with joy.
from the International Children’s Bible

Some call the seven gifts outlined here, ‘motivational gifts’. It is common for Christians to have a natural strength in one or more of these areas. However, to be more effective in serving God in whatever situation we find ourselves, we should try to grow in all the gifts, not just the ones we are naturally good at.

In the following stories, two children learn about the gifts by observing African animals:
Prophecy (Insight)

For this gift we need to be able to see the meaning of what God is saying. In order to use the gift of prophecy we have to stay alert like the giraffe, who has excellent eye sight. We have to have special eyes to see and ears to hear what God is saying.


This gift is shown to us by the little tick bird who serves the rhinoceros, riding on its back and picking the ticks from its skin.


The monkeys are excellent teachers of their young, and the young are attentive learners.


In order to encourage others we need to be strong in the Lord, putting our own problems aside and with God’s strength, lift up others. The eagle exemplifies this attribute, having great strength for take-off, and the ability to soar to great heights.


The lionesses are the givers of the pride. They work hard to provide food for their family.


The meerkats show us an example of an organized community, with good leaders. A leader in God’s family must be humble, prepared to serve, and treat everyone fairly. Jesus gave us the greatest example of leadership. He showed humility and served mankind.

Kindness (showing mercy)

The elephants are an example of kindness in the way they rear their young. The whole elephant community cares for the young cooperatively, so that orphaned babies are taken care of.

Using all the gifts

The chameleon reminds us about the importance of growing in all the gifts, not just our strengths. God wants us to use the right gift for the right situation, just as the chameleon has the ability to change its colour according to its situation. It turns a dark colour to absorb heat when the weather is cool, and a light colour to reflect the heat when the weather is hot.

Characteristics of Motivational Gifts
The prophetic one

  • “tells is like it is”

  • can be blunt

  • quickly identifies good and evil

  • is often an intercessor

  • has strict personal standards

The server

  • remembers the things that people like or dislike

  • enjoys serving and does not think of work as a drudge

  • is generous by nature and will do more than asked

  • has a high energy level

  • prefers doing than delegating

  • sees serving as highest importance

  • has a hard time saying’ no’

The teacher

  • needs to validate truth

  • loves detail and precise definitions

  • can successfully enable someone to learn

  • believes that all scripture must be viewed in context

  • believes that TRUTH has power to change and that the gift of teaching is fundamental

  • likes to check out sources, check accuracy and finer details

  • leans towards scripture rather than experience

The encourager

  • may be inclined to use scripture out of context

  • may centre on experience

  • has a positive outlook

  • like to apply truth rather than just study it

  • likes immediate response

  • likes to do personal counseling

The giver

  • supports in all sorts of areas

  • is not limited to finances
  • has a good sense of value / recognizes a bargain

  • will intercede for needs

  • is industrious

  • tends towards success

The leader

  • is highly motivated to organize the people they are responsible for

  • sees the long-term picture

  • enjoys delegating

  • writes notes to self

  • may respond to criticism with outer indifference

The one who shows mercy

Understanding the motivation of each spiritual gift
Let’s pretend that all of the seven motivational gifts are represented in the one family. Each member is strong in one of the seven gifs. Someone is carrying the whole dessert dish to the table, and drops it on the floor. What would each person say, and why would they say it?
The prophetic one

“That’s what happens when you’re not careful!”

(Motivation: to correct the problem)
The server

“Oh, let me help you clean it up.”

(Motivation: to fulfill a need)
The teacher

“The reason that it fell is that it was too heavy on one side.”

(Motivation: to discover why it happened)
The encourager

“Next time, let’s serve the dessert in bowls before carrying it to the table.”

Motivation: to correct the situation so that it doesn’t happen again in the future.
The giver

“I’ll be happy to go down to the shops and buy a new dessert.”

(Motivation: to give to a tangible need)

The leader

“Tom, would you get the mop. Meg, please help scrape it up; and Kim, help me prepare another dessert.”

Motivation: to achieve the immediate goal of the group.

The one who shows mercy

“Don’t feel badly. It could have happened to anyone.”

Motivation: to relieve embarrassment)

Developing motivational gifts in students

Romans 12:6


This is the child that loves to research.

Provide plenty of free-choice project opportunities.

This child needs a wealth of books and information to research.

Provide opportunities for presenting research projects to the class.

Also give opportunities to explain Biblical meaning.


Look for the child that likes to help.

Give them responsibilities in the area of classroom / equipment maintenance.

Set up situations where they can help others in academic work e.g. helping younger children with reading.


This child loves to give gifts.

Provide opportunities for making gifts for others, e.g. writing a story for a younger child.

Put this child in charge of a giving project, e.g. to a hospital, nursing home or overseas community.


Allow this child to work with others who need support.

Give them opportunities to teach others one-on-one.
Leadership / administration

Allow this student to mentor others.

Give opportunities for group leadership.

Involve this child in the setting up and running of rosters.


Give opportunities to comfort others, e.g. be a friend to a new class member.

Give responsibility in missions or community projects.
Prophesy / insight

This child has a gift of hearing what God is saying.

Give opportunities for reflection on Bible verses / stories and encourage them to share what God is saying.

Motivational gifts and teaching styles

This section gives opportunity for teachers to reflect on their own motivational gifts and the ways they are used in teaching.
A teacher’s God-given gifts may be reflected in his/her teaching style or classroom management style as follows:
Teaching: the ability to impart knowledge and lead others to revealed truth



  • shows diligence to the profession

  • is enthusiastic about subject matter

  • researches subject matter deeply


  • tends to use large group instruction (lecture style)

  • shows lack of emotional involvement with personal needs of pupils

  • does not involve students in planning

Serving: the ability to see and do things that need to be done



  • provides numerous and colouful materials

  • able to think ‘on the spot’ and provide individual instruction

  • teaches according to the child’s interests

  • puts the students first


  • gives little direct instruction

  • focuses on short-term goals, ignoring long-term goals

  • may be prone to ‘burn-out’, trying to meet the needs of every individual.

Giving: the ability to handle and give resources to others


  • likes big projects

  • sees the big picture

  • encourages students to look outside of themselves

  • has a generous spirit

  • likes to work with others


  • may have an excessively liberal attitude towards finances and materials

Encouragement: the ability to encourage others to grow and to be equipped to meet the experiences of life



  • provides necessary detail

  • gives concrete examples

  • wants all the children to ‘get it’

  • knows who has, and who has not ‘got it’


  • can be a little harsh if children don’t respond

Leading: the ability to see long range goals and to help others find and move in their ministry



  • tries out new systems

  • runs classroom systems well

  • lets children choose within a system

  • is good teacher ‘up front’


  • may become frustrated; (impatient when things are not going the right way)

  • may have excessive ambition for moving into a leadership role

  • needs to guard against pride

Mercy: the ability to feel where people are and identify with their needs



  • facilitates in interpersonal relationships

  • shares himself / herself with the class

  • wants to shape students


  • needs to beware of too much emotional involvement

  • can be disorganized in room management

Prophecy / insight: the ability to ‘see’ where people and programs really are



  • has a passion for curriculum

  • wants truth to be communicated completely and totally

  • has high standards for the classroom


  • may not be popular with the staff due to prophetic motivation

  • may give too much attention to irrelevant detail

  • may be more concerned about classroom standards than individual needs

with acknowledgements to Helen Garrity and Bill Gothard
Questionnaire: All God’s children have gifts
Write a number next to each sentence:

3 – greatly

2 – quite a bit

1 – a little

0 – not at all

  1. I am enthusiastic about explaining the meaning of the Bible to others.

  2. I don’t mind going without something myself if I know it can help someone else.

  3. I enjoy doing class presentations.

  4. I like to encourage those who are having a bad day.

  5. I like to share my things with others.

  6. I like to organize group members in class.

  7. I feel sad when others are sad.

  8. I like stories that have hidden meaning,
  9. I like to have friends around and make them feel welcome.

  10. I like to learn facts.

  11. I encourage my friends to do their best.

  12. I like to give gifts to others.

  13. I like to be a group leader.

  14. I like to visit those who are sick.

  15. I would like to give class devotion.

  16. I like to work under someone who gives me instructions on what to do.

  17. I enjoy finding out the meaning of words.

  18. I like to help people with their problems.

  19. I like to give my money or things to those in need.

  20. I like to make plans and carry them out.

  21. I feel sorry for those who are having a hard time.

  22. I sometimes know what God is saying to me.

  23. I like to help Mum or Dad do preparations when visitors are coming.

  24. I like reading the Bible.

  25. I like to help others know more about God.

  26. I like to make gifts for others.

  27. I like things to be well organized.

  28. If I do good work I don’t mind if people don’t know about it.

  29. When I explain the meaning of the Bible to people they understand what I’m saying really well.

  30. I like to help people who have a lot of work to do.

  31. I like to look up Bible verses.

  32. I can often understand what is troubling someone.

  33. If I had $20 a month I would use it to sponsor a child in a needy country.

  34. In a game I am good at explaining the rules to others and I like teaching them how to play the game.

  35. When a young child is crying I like to calm them down and find out what’s wrong.

Now fill out the chart:

Write your scores for each question next to the numbers in the boxes.




































Now add up the numbers in the rows horizontally. Write the total of each row at the right hand end of the row.

Each row stands for a gift. Find out which gifts are your strongest. (See next page)

Key to table:

Row A (top row): Prophecy / insight

Row B: Serving

Row C: Teaching

Row D: Encouraging others

Row E: Giving

Row F: Leadership

Row G (bottom row): Caring for the needy (mercy)

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