Being faithful to God, my children, and the life he has given me gives me great joy. Being faithful to what is coming brings me greater joy.
I am an optimistic person, so I tend to look for the best in all situations. Sometimes that can be tough, though. Even the most faithful and optimistic people can get drained and have rough days.
Last weekend, we learned about the “Parable of the Three Servants” (also called the “Parable of the Talents”). As an optimist, I try to see the good in the servant who buried his one bag of silver. I know the parable has a meaning and purpose or Jesus wouldn’t have told it—have faith in your talents, and don’t doubt your abilities by burying them and doing nothing with what you are given.
“To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.”
Follow me as I try to see things from the perspective of the third servant. Is it possible he buried his silver because he was afraid he would mess up? What if he truthfully and prayerfully thought that was the wisest decision he could make? Maybe he became a servant because he wasn’t good with his own money, and the best thing to do with it was hide it from himself? We’ll never know the details, but something caused him to be fearful and bury what he’d been given.
“I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.”
One of my talents is talking to people—it can be a blessing and a curse at times. When I talk to someone and bring them joy or help them through a tough situation in life, it is so rewarding for me. But when I take on too much, I tend to lose track of myself and forget to do things that make me happy, smile, and feel good. Like the third servant, I have a tendency to lose faith and bury my talent when I become overwhelmed. But I don’t want to lose it or waste it.
I have to make a conscious effort to invest in myself and my relationship with God so that I have the energy to dig up my talent when I bury it and the faith necessary to let it grow. Then I’m better equipped to use my gifts to invest in what matters—expanding the Kingdom of Heaven.
What about you? Are you faithfully investing what your Master has given you?
The Lord answered, “If you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘May you be uprooted and be planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you!”
It only takes a mustard seed of faith for God to make a huge impact in our lives and in the lives of the people we encounter. When we invest in ourselves and our relationship with God through daily prayer and Bible study, our faith grows and our cup is filled. And when our cup is filled, it’s so much easier to pour ourselves into others’ lives to fill their cups too.
Is your cup full? Are you helping to fill others’ cups?
How do you feel when you invest your time to help others?
Is something—fear, burnout, greed—preventing you from fully investing your gifts? Do you need to invest in yourself or your relationship with God (i.e.: find help, join Celebrate Recovery, participate in Financial Peace University, simplify your schedule, join a Group, etc.) so that you’re in a better position to faithfully share what you’ve been given?
Go through GrowTrack to discover where you are best suited to invest your talents. You won’t regret it!
Ask a friend or neighbor what you can do to help them in their lives.
Invite someone to come to a service with you.
Father, thank you for the mindset you have given me and allowing me to care so much for others. Thank you for giving me the ability to determine when I need you, for being there to listen when I hit a rough patch in faith, and for always loving me through those times. I love you, Father, and am so thankful for the days you allow me to fill others’ cups because you’ve overflowed mine. In your Son’s glorious name, amen.
This post was written by Casey Stengel. Casey is a follower of Christ, a dad, and an avid Chicago sports fan. When he’s not working, he enjoys spending time with family and friends. He works in recovery and loves to help people however he can. He is also working toward his Associate Degree in Biblical Studies.
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