BURYING OUR TALENTS
Then the one who had received the one talent also came forward, saying,
'Master, I knew that you were a harsh man, reaping where you did not sow,
and gathering where you did not scatter seed;
so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground.
Here you have what is yours.'
This verse is from the Parable of the Talents found in Matthew 25:14-30. It's about God's call for faithfulness in the use of our talents.
Last Friday our online Bible study group talked about this parable in our discussion of faithfulness as one of the Fruit of the Spirit. We talked about the fact that often we don't feel comfortable doing a specific task and so we just dismiss it by saying, "That's just not my gift." When we say that, we bury our God-given talents just because we are looking for that "special" gift.
We often expect our talents to come completely developed, neatly labeled, and tied with a bright red ribbon. If they don't, then we say they aren't "our gifts." When we do that, we limit God. I wonder how many neglected opportunities slip by because of this kind of thinking? Gordon Fee refers to these self-imposed limitations as "hardening of the categories"! I love that!
We forget in this day of instant satisfaction that none of our talents come full-grown. It's only as we cultivate them that they begin to mature and multiply. The more we use them, the more others are blessed through them.
God is calling each of us to a life of adventure. Remember, an adventure is not an adventure unless there is some risk involved. Are we willing to take risks in our walk with Jesus? Are we willing to look a little foolish from time to time as we seek to develop new talents?
The warning of this parable is this: God holds us responsible for our lives and what we do with them.
The joyful reward is this: One day we will stand before our great God and hear Him say, "Well done, good and faithful servant!"
Let us pray: Gracious and loving God, we want to be open to Your leading even when we aren't sure of our ability. Help us to put our complete trust in You to know what we are capable of far better than we do. Amen.