When hearing or learning about the Sacrament of Confirmation, you most likely have stumbled upon the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. You may remember playing games and seeing how each Gift can apply to you, frantically memorizing the textbook definitions of each Gift, or maybe just hearing the words and never thinking about them again. The Gifts of the Holy Spirit can be a confusing topic to grasp, especially since they sometimes appear to blur together. Whatever situation you find yourself in, we are here to help!
Now, what are these Gifts of the Holy Spirit, where do they come from, and what purpose do they serve you?
The Gifts of the Holy Spirit are just as they sound: Gifts that are given to us by the Holy Spirit to help us. They enable us to live more fully as disciples of Christ and work to build up His Kingdom here on Earth. There are seven Gifts: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, piety, fear of the Lord, and knowledge, which find their roots (as you may have guessed) in Scripture – Isaiah 11:1-2, to be exact. We receive these Gifts in Baptism, when we are freed from sin and marked as sons and daughters of God. These gifts are strengthened when we fully receive the Holy Spirit in the sacrament of Confirmation. We find in us the desire to go out and share Christ’s love with others because the Gifts of the Holy Spirit have set our hearts on fire. These Gifts are permanent, leading us to unite with and orient ourselves toward God.
If you follow us on Instagram (@inflamecatholic), you may have noticed our highlighted stories on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit – seven Gifts, seven days. If you haven’t seen those stories, or if you simply want a refresher, we have compiled descriptions of all 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit here on our website! So, without further ado, here we go!
Wisdom: This gift allows us to see from God’s point of view – through His eyes. Our lives take on a deeper meaning, because we recognize His presence and how He is working through everything and every moment and every situation. It enables us to see God as our Heavenly Father and to see all humans as His beloved children, created in His own image and likeness.
Understanding: Our faith is pretty complicated. However, the gift of Understanding allows us to, simply put, understand our faith! It enables us to recognize Truth, and comprehend and articulate those difficult beliefs. Through this, we are able to grasp a deeper understanding of what exactly we believe and why.
Counsel: This Gift aids us in making good choices and allows us to determine right from wrong; we are able to judge how best to act. It is the voice of the Holy Spirit within us that enlightens us to choose and behave according to what is right.
Fortitude: This Gift gives us the courage to overcome difficulties and strengthens us to take risks for our faith. Fortitude gives us the conviction to stand up for what is right and truthful.
Piety: The Gift of Piety perfects religion; it fills us with the desire to revere and worship God in the way He deserves. Piety helps us live our lives with the goal of pleasing God and seeking holiness.
Fear of the Lord: This Gift describes our fear of sinning and offending God, and our profound reverence and adoration for Him. Also known as Wonder and Awe, it helps us fall more in love with our Creator and all He has given us and gives us the desire to fully depend on Him.
Knowledge: We humans are created with intellect – which comes from the Latin word intelligere, meaning to discern or choose between. The Gift of Knowledge allows us to judge created things with some degree of divine instinct, which helps us choose the path that leads us more closely to him. This Gift enables us to recognize our purpose and wrap our minds around God’s plans for us, which, in turn, helps us to live up to and fulfill this meaning.
There you have it, folks! The seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Pretty amazing, right?
Always remember that God equips you with everything you could ever need in order to live a life in joyful pursuit of Him! God bless.