What’s your talent? Take the time now: name something you’re good at (out loud).
We’ve all got things that we’ve been told we do well or that we feel that we excel in. What hobbies do you like? Do you love singing, playing an instrument, playing a sport, or writing? Maybe your talent is something else like collecting coupons, holding babies, making others feel comfortable in a social setting, or knitting. Are you good at juggling or encouraging others or drawing? Can you decorate a room, re-purpose old furniture, cook meals that make mouths water or run faster than the average person?
No matter what your talent, how are you using it for God’s glory?
This morning I was reading a book that my sister had given to my kids. As they listened to the Parable of the Talents, I was feeling convicted. Here is the story from the Bible:
“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. The man who had received the five talents went to work at once and put his money to work and gained five more. So also, the one with two talents gained two more. But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’ His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share in your master’s happiness!’
The man with the two talents also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.’ His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share in your master’s happiness!’
Then the man who had received one talent came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. So I was afraid and sent out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’ His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest. Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'” Matthew 25:14-30
While this passage is obviously talking about money, I think we can relate it to actual “talents” that we possess. How can we use the things that we’re good at (whether it’s a lot of things or a few things) for God’s glory? If you’re good at playing with children, your church can use your help! If you’re good at collecting coupons and getting groceries cheap, maybe you could consider donating to your local food bank. If you have great organizational skills, maybe a local ministry could use an hour or two of your time. If you know how to work a computer, maybe you could help your church’s A/V team. If you know how to crochet, maybe you could consider making baby blankets for the hospital like my mom does.
Even the most time-deprived person can serve the Lord with the gifts He’s given. But do we get started?
- Consider the talents God has given you. Write a list of things that you’re good at. It doesn’t have to be related to how you’ll serve yet, but it’s a good start. Chances are that if you’re good at something, you’ll also enjoy it!
- Pray about how to use those talents for God’s glory. I recently read in Jeremiah about how he would prophesy. It was interesting to hear him say that he just spoke the words that the Lord would give him or things he had seen that the Lord had showed him. In addition, he said “But if I say, ‘I will not mention [God] or speak any more in His name,’ His word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.” Jeremiah 20:9. I’ve been praying for this kind of fire. May we know what we are to do and not be able to NOT do it! May God give us a burning desire to do His will and work on earth!
- Take action. Don’t hide it under a bushel – NO! Let it shine! Ask your church leader how you can serve, look up local organizations that may need your help, ask a neighbor or a friend if you can be of service, or look for other ways to give God glory for your talents.
And now’s a great time to remind you that God gives us the talents to start. When we just serve out of the goodness of our heart in a position we’re not called to, it can quickly feel burdensome. But, when we use a talent that God has given us, we can feel great satisfaction in glorifying Him by using our talents for His purposes!
They don’t have to be “showy” talents like preaching on stage or leading worship on your guitar. Maybe you can do something “silly” like balance a pole on the edge of your chin – I just saw a children’s show where a man did exactly that and he talked about the love of Christ to those little ones in the audience. Wow! I heard another friend of mine say that she feels like she is good at counseling young newly married gals; I’m sure there’s a lot of women who could use some advice! I would have loved a mentor! I have another friend who’s a great cook who said she signed up at her church to bless people with meals when they have a need.
Maybe your ministry could be encouragement – are you good at remembering to send cards or postcards (hey, feel free to even leave a comment on a blog post!). Maybe your talent is in math or accounting, writing or proofreading, speaking or even cleaning. If you’re good at something, there is a place for you in God’s kingdom work!
I encourage you to not waste your life in the humdrum of everyday and forget eternity. Who can you bless? How can you glorify God with what He’s given you? What is He calling you to today? Let’s pray and ask!
Dear Father God, thank You for Your Word. Thank You for blessing each one of us with talents. Whether we have several things we’re good at or just one thing, we realize that we are to be using our gifts for Your ultimate glory. And Lord, when asked what is most important, You tell us that it’s loving You and then loving others. How can we use our talents to show You love or to bless others on earth? What does it look like to use our talents for Your glory? Where do you want us and how can we serve? Please open doors of opportunity and give us the instinct to immediately obey. May we not lose the eternal for the things that are passing. May our lives be for Your ultimate glory – it would be a joy to hear ‘Well done, good and faithful servant’ when You come back for us! Thank You, Lord. In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!