1. What Has God Given You?
One of the phrases that leaps off the page to me when I read this story is “to each according to his own ability.” This leads me to ask the simple question: what has God given you to do? What is your role and expectation in the kingdom?
Remember, he began the parable by saying the kingdom of heaven is like. God has given you a responsibility, according to your ability. So often we leave the work of preaching the gospel and making disciples to those who are “called” to do it. Well, the reality is that calling is for all of us. Some may have more responsibility if God has called them to do that in a full-time capacity, but we are all called to this purpose. These are the goods God has delivered to you and me.
Whether God has positioned you to do this full-time or not, please recognize what God has given you. The message of the gospel (the goods) is alive in you if you know Jesus as your savior.
2. What Are You Doing with It?
Now that you are aware of the responsibility, because it applies to everyone, what are you doing with it? I don’t just want to be theoretical here, I want to be very practical. Remember, one had 5 talents, one had 2 talents, and one had 1 talent. I want you to shift your mindset for a moment and understand something. Everyone is in full-time ministry. The difference is what is the primary focus of your ministry.
Some people’s ministry is only focused on the gospel and disciples all the time (5 talents). Some people work full-time outside of a church or “ministry” setting and may volunteer to serve in church. For this person the majority of their ministry happens in their jobs and communities (2 talents or 1 talent). So being a teacher, business person, an accountant (or whatever your occupation) is full-time ministry.
The difference is that the primary focus of your ministry is not just preaching the gospel. You may have kids to teach, or people to manage, or numbers to crunch—but it is still ministry. In the course of working, you can shine light and share the truth of the gospel when the opportunities arise.
The bottom line is you may not be able to do as much as someone with 5 talents, but you still can contribute with the talents God has given you.
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