Life Notes—November 5, 2009
“For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away.” Matthew 25: 29
The above passage is the conclusion of the parable of the talents. I remember wondering, as a younger person, what this parable said about justice. The story is about a man going on a journey, entrusting his property to others in his absence. To one he gives five talents, to another two, and to another he gives one. Upon his return the person entrusted with the five talents had used them to earn an additional five talents. The person given two talents had also doubled his original allotment. But the person given only one talent had done nothing with it and only had the original talent to show for his stewardship. The master praises the first two for using their talents wisely and increasing them, but criticizes the last for wasting his, calling him a ‘wicked and lazy slave’ and takes his one talent away and gives it to the one with the greatest abundance.
Can anyone else relate to the person with only one talent? I have watched people throughout my life with so much more than I have—more money, more athletic ability, better looks, greater intelligence—and I wonder what I could accomplish had I only been blessed like these others. Had I been given five talents at birth, just imagine how I could’ve multiplied those by now!
Which, of course, misses the point entirely. Even if the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, it is not our grass—not the grass we were given, not our grass to tend to, not the grass we will be held to account for. While we cannot know why some people are blessed with much and others little, we are responsible for identifying the gifts and talents we have and putting them to the best use we can in as many areas of need we can. A careful reading of the verse above shows that to all those who have, more will be given. We all have been given something. How we use that which we have will determine our abundance. Our gifts are not meant to be trophies for display, but tools to be used for good. The parable of the talents, ultimately, is about stewardship and accountability.
This Sunday Tom’s sermon is “Hidden Talents,” based on the scripture passage from Matthew 25: 14-30. Life Worship begins at 10:45 in Brady Hall. Traditional worship is at 8:30 and 11:00 in the sanctuary. Contemporary worship begins at 9:30 at the west campus.
Come home to worship this Sunday! And bring your talents with you…
Greg Hildenbrand, Life Music Coordinator