The Gospel of the talents is a hard one to understand. Why does Jesus give more to those that already have and takes away the single one that is left unused? As I read it this morning, the emotion that I discovered was fear. The one who had received the one talent went off and dug a hole and buried his master’s money. He did this out of fear. He knew that his master was a harsh employer and so while he kept the money safe he did not invest it wisely. The first man who had received the five talents went off immediately and began to use them, trading them until he doubled what he was given. This man received the other man’s talent.
What I learned in one of the meditation books that I read every morning is that one talent is about the equivalent of 80 pounds of silver which works out to about 20 years of wages in those times. This means that the man who received the five talents had enough wages for more than a lifetime. How scary that must have been for him! Yet he does not let his fear get the best of him. Instead straightaway he goes and works for the Master. There is no hesitation. There is no fear. Are we able to do the same for God?
Many years ago, I took a Life in the Spirit seminar and one of the women praying with me had a vision of Jesus coming before me with a silver platter stacked high with gifts brightly and beautifully decorated. The image still takes my breath away. I remember, at the time, feeling quite overwhelmed with that vision. However, I hope that I have held true to opening those gifts and sharing them with our world. God is such a gracious giver. God gives more than enough. Even the man who received only one talent was given more than enough. God has given me more.than.enough. For that I am incredibly grateful.
I think each of us receive more than enough and we cannot hoard it. We are meant to share. We are part of a community. We depend on one another. Yesterday, I went back to see the artist whose painting had haunted me and to thank him for his gift to me. His talent had sparked action for me that changed me and blessed me. I walked through every door that year that I could because of him. That is what each of us are called to do. Be more than enough. You have all that it takes, my friends.
Are you hoarding or sharing your talent?
Does fear control you or do you know that you are more than enough?
Generous God, pour out your blessings on us and remove any fear that we may have so that we may use these for your glory. You give more than enough. Help us to use what you give to bless others and to make this world the amazing place that you envision. Amen.