A few months ago I had my nephew read the Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25:14-30. After he read it, we went to dinner to discuss it. He explained to me how the king had given servants silver and asked them to invest it while he was gone. When he came back for his money, one servant made ten times the original, another made five times and a third just buried it in the ground. The king was happy with the first two, but furious with the third.
After he explained it to me, I pulled out a hundred dollar bill. His eyes lit up. I slid it across the table to him and told him to invest it for me. I told I wanted him to think of a ministry he wanted to support with it. He quickly named a missionary in Kenya who had made an impact on him. I then told him when I come back for the money, we’ll give it to the missionary. He ended turning that $100 into nearly $500 in three months. Not bad for a 12 year old.
It got me to thinking about what am I doing with the talents God has given me. Am I using them? Am I growing them? Have I invested them so that when He comes to me and asks I can show a profit? Yes, the story is about money, but I’m talking about gifts God has enabled me with. Each of us has been given certain gifts and talents. Not one of us is talentless. Sure, some have more talent and gifts than others, but that doesn’t give us the right to bury ours in the sand.
What has God given you the ability to do? Some of us are good at growing and making money. Some of us are good at helping others in need. Some of us are good at meeting strangers and talking to them. Some of us are good at building and rebuilding things. Each of us have something that we love doing and are good at. How can you use that to honor God and grow His Kingdom?
Romans 12: 6-8, Paul tells us that no matter what gift God has given you, you should do it well. And in I Corinthians 12:7, he says that a spiritual gift has been given to each one of us so we can help each other. That means that God has given you a gift! He gave each one of us a gift. What would happen if you got your gift at Christmas, but refused to open it? Someone put thought and effort into getting a gift just for you, but you refused to open it. That’s not right.
There are many who do that with the gift God has given them. They refuse to open it and share it with the world. I think that is like the third servant who buried his talent in the ground. He told the king, “I hid your talent and kept it safe.” The king was displeased with this response. He didn’t ask him to keep it safe. He asked him to risk it. How are you taking a risk with what God has given you? What can you do to take a greater risk? There’s a saying in business that says, “No risk. No reward.” Don’t be afraid to take a risk today with your gift.