S. 1 Timothy 4:14a, 15-16a "Do not neglect your gift...Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch our life and doctrine closely."
O. Paul encourages Timothy to use his pastoral gift and to thoroughly give himself to that work. People watch our lives and it is good that they see progress in us - so Timothy is to make sure his life and teachings are sound.
I like the teaching by Paul and encouragement for Timothy to give himself wholly to his giftedness. God gives us gifts (which I understand to be our strengths) and He desires us to use those gifts, in fact, we are to give ourselves completely (wholly) to them.
There are some who think we should work on our weaknesses, possibly with the goal to be well rounded, which sounds good. However God gives us gifts that we should use and Paul says to Timothy to give yourself to your gifts "wholly." God gives us gifts (what I also would call strengths in the spiritual area, things that we are simply good (gifted)) and these gifts are to be used to expand the kingdom and build up other believers.
If we are working on our weak areas, then we're not giving ourselves wholly or completely to our gifts. Also, working on our weaknesses sort of precludes trying to having anyone else involved in our life, almost a selfishness.
However, if we use our gifts we then need to have other people around us who are strong where we are weak. Working on strengths means that we need others, we need other members of the body of Christ to carry out the functions and gifts God has given to them.
A. So let's work on our strengths and depend upon others in the advancement of the Kingdom. I am encouraged by this word to stay at my pastoral gifts, (continue to work at, sharpen the saw) and make sure my life and teaching are solid.
P. Thank you Father for the reinder and encouragement to continue in my calling with balance and sound teaching.