It is so easy for us to judge ultimate value and worth through the lens of gifts and abilities. Rather than celebrating and honoring all gifts and those who have them, we tend to venerate a few, and ignore the others–this is occurring in the 1st century church of Corinth and the Apostle Paul understands the threat. So, God provides the Corinthians, and us, with a different vision of how gifts and people might operate in community.
It is ‘hardwired’ into us to want to make a contribution. This is why identifying and using our gifts/abilities is so important to us. And once we do discover and exercise our abilities it will result in one of two attitudes—pride or humility. We will either stand up—chests puffed out with pride—or fall on our knees in humility. The former is happening in the church in Corinth. As they begin to use their spiritual gifts the results is comparing, competition and pride. And, so Paul draws their attention to a different place—not the gift and the self, but the Giver and the purpose for the gift.