Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. (NIV) 1 Peter 4:10
Who are your role models? Are they the people who seem to do amazing things for God: Moses? David? Joseph? Modern leaders who affect great social change? Or is it a beloved auntie who always welcomed you and your friends with a snack? Or the teacher who made the extra effort to make sure you passed algebra? Or the sound guy in the church who makes sure you can hear the sermon every week? Some people’s talents lead them to work “behind the scenes” and through them God is building his kingdom.
Had you heard of Huldah before this? I had not. Hers is a tiny story in a big kingdom, but it is remarkable. The book of 2 Chronicles was written at a time when the people of Israel were in exile and needed a reminder of their history. It is primarily about kings with various degrees of faithfulness to God. After a litany of bad kings, we get the story of Huldah the prophet: a woman who remembered, studied, and passed on the memory of God’s laws even when those in power forgot or were even hostile.
Though not much information is given about Huldah in the Bible, scholars believe that she was a teacher and held the collective memory of generations. What is unusual about this story is that Huldah was a woman respected enough to be called on to provide insight from the Lord for a king! What led to that respect? Not hobnobbing in the halls of power, but years of faithful study and service behind the scenes. Huldah had shared enough of her gifts that others knew of her and even called her a prophet. And when God needed a message sent to the new king, Huldah was ready and willing to put her gifts to use again. What an encouragement to the first readers to faithfully pursue their passions and use them for God, even in hostile territory. And what an encouragement for us to use gifts now rather than wait.
As parents, we often encourage our children to pursue passions and interests, but we often frame them as having some great payoff in the future: scholarships, fame, or mastery. We need to remind them of God’s call to use their talents to help others NOW.
Show some examples of kids who are working “behind the scenes” using their gifts and energy to build God’s Kingdom. Some good examples can be found at Kids Corner’s Kids in Action page. Discuss how these kids are using their talents and passions for God. How are they blessing the community?
Ask your children to list their gifts and what they are good at. Ask family members and grandparents to add suggestions to your child's gifts list, so that they can sort out ways that God is calling them to serve in big ways and in small things. Drawing pictures, playing an instrument, teaching a new friend to play a game, helping with the AV at church, all of these are small acts of service that show God’s love.
We may never know why God chose Huldah to reveal his Word at such a pivotal time in history. Nevertheless, she is a great example for us, because she was familiar with all the words in the book. She knew the Bible. Let's also turn to God’s Word, read, and discern how he is calling us to use our gifts to build God’s kingdom.
Want to do a deep dive? Check out Family Fire's article Becoming Stewards of God's Gifts.