I originally heard this from Rick Warren. I have no idea if it was original to him or if it was created by someone else, but I have used it in my ministry for about 15 years.
The concept is that God create each one of us to serve Him with our own unique SHAPE. SHAPE stand for –
S. – Spiritual Gifts. Each one of us is given unique abilities through the power of the Holy Spirit. I used to give a written test from Ephesians 4 ministries but now I see there are several versions online that can be taken for free. Simply do a Google search of “Free Spiritual Gift Test.”
H. – Heart. What do you do that gets your heart pumping faster? Do you love sports or singing or even talking? What do you have a heart for?
A. – Ability. Throughout each of our lives we pick up different abilities. Some people can cook and others can’t. Some people can fix things and others can’t. And on and on it goes.
P. – Personality. What type of personality to you have? Are you and introvert or an extrovert? Do you love to be with people or alone? There are also all types of personality tests out there but most of them reveal what we already know to be true about ourselves.
E. – Experience. What experiences have you been through in your life that you could use for God? These could be positive or negative. After all, who better to work with an alcoholic than a former alcoholic? Use your unique experiences for God’s glory.
I encourage people to look at more than one aspect of their life to decide what God might want them to do for his glory. And then, do not limit ministry to one hour on Sunday morning. I once walked through this with a Church member trying to help him get involved. He said, “How about fishing?” He explained further, “I love to fish and I give most of my spare time to doing that.” I looked at him and said something like this, “Well, our Church has a bunch of kids who have no father because of death and divorce. I know most of them would love to have someone take them fishing. I think you could have one of the Church’s greatest ministries if you would use it.” He grew silent and finally said, “Okay.”
Now, to the best of my knowledge he never did anything with that information. He never served anyone with his life. To me it is a sad story of “what could have been.” I pray that your life and my life will be a story of how God used my unique SHAPE to bless others for His glory.