When I was in first grade, I spent a week at my Uncle Eddy’s beach house. Each night my whole family walked to a local ice cream parlor for dessert. On one of our last nights there, I begged my parents to allow me to carry the money. At this time in history, $10 was enough to buy a family of five a waffle cone. I don’t remember if I had a hole in my pocket or simply dropped this bill along the way. Whatever happened, I lost the money and lost the trust of my family on the same night.
He who is faithful in a very little [thing] is faithful also in much, and he who is dishonest and unjust in a very little [thing] is dishonest and unjust also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the [case of] unrighteous mammon (deceitful riches, money, possessions), who will entrust to you the true riches? 12 And if you have not proved faithful in that which belongs to another [whether God or man], who will give you that which is your own [that is, the true riches]? – Luke 16:10-12
One of Jesus’ most famous stories is the Parable of the Talents, Matthew 25:14-30. This is just one of a series of parables that Jesus shares to illustrate what the kingdom of heaven will be like. Meanwhile, Luke records the Parable of the Shrewd Manager. The latter story refers to an individual who had let things slide over time. Like a business on the verge of bankruptcy, this man is forced to act swiftly before losing everything. The moral of this parable is if you can’t be trusted in the little things, God won’t trust you with greater responsibilities in this life.
And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, Master, you entrusted two talents to me; here I have gained two talents more. 23 His master said to him, Well done, you upright (honorable, [admirable) and faithful servant! You have been faithful and trustworthy over a little; I will put you in charge of much. Enter into and share the joy (the delight, the [e]blessedness) which your master enjoys. 24 He who had received one talent also came forward, saying, Master, I knew you to be a harsh and hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you had not winnowed [the grain]. 25 So I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is your own, Matthew 25:22-25.
The Parable of the Talents is based upon integrity, doing what’s right when no one is looking. Three servants are left in charge of their master’s finances while he is away, not given a specific time table of his return. While a silver talent is equivalent to $3,924 and a gold talent $228,900, the point of this story is to seize each day on earth by using your God given gifts. If you are wasting these talents or afraid to fail, this is when God will lose faith in you. Since it’s never too late to change, fan into flame your God given gifts today, 2 Timothy 1:6, before the Lord calls you home.
by Jay Mankus