Everyone Has A Talent
Today’s story tells us many things about our life.
The first thing that caught my attention was that we are all equipped with talents. Every single one of you has talents.
Some of you sing well. Some of you do sports well. Some of you have good intelligence. Some of you have a great personality. Some of you have wisdom. Some of you have good health.
Every single one of you has talents if you look at yourself carefully.
Don’t say that I have no talent. God gave each and every one of you talents. Some are hidden and others may be dormant yet. But you have talents.
Another thing that caught my attention was that not everyone has the same amount of talents. Some have 5 talents. Others have 2 talents and still others have one talent.
That’s a fact. What can you do? Some are smarter than you. Some are stronger than you.
No matter how much you try, if you were not born with a great voice, you will never be able to sing like Pavarotti or Celine Dion or Elvis. What can you do?
No matter how much you try, there will be people who are better than you. You may not live up to the level of Tiger Woods or Michael Jordan even though you may have some athletic talents.
Not only are our talents different, the amount of talents you have is different. This is where the problem comes.
We don’t like that. If our talents are all different, then it’s ok. We can accept that. We can at least say that even if I don’t sing well, I can dance well.
But when the amount is different, when other people are better than you, it’s hard to accept that. Because it makes you feel small and insignificant. You question why you are not as good as others.
Why is she prettier than me? Why is he taller than me? Does God love me less?
We translate the amount of talents into the amount of God’s love. We measure the amount of God’s love with the amount of talents we have.
Appreciating Your Talents
Once you start thinking like that, you are entering into a very slippery slope. This kind of thinking may lead you into self-pity and into a dark gloomy place.
You lose confidence. You cannot even use the talent you have well.
Maybe, that was what Jesus meant when he said this.
For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. (Matthew 25:29)
I think that is what the person with one talent did. He felt that what he had was nothing compared to those who had 2 talents and 5 talents. He thought they had talents twice as much, five times as much as he had.
All of a sudden what he had seemed so small and so insignificant. He didn’t appreciate what he had.
That is the problem a lot of us have. We don’t appreciate what we have.
But do you know how much is one talent? It is a big amount. It is the amount a day labourer can save for 20 years without spending it at all.
The story is telling us that we all have enough.
Even the person who had one talent had enough to be able to do something worthwhile. But he didn’t think of doing anything with it. He just hid it in the ground. Even though what he had was enough, he fell into this trap of comparing himself with others.
This reminds me of the movie Amadeus. Salieri was a good musician and yet he felt that he had nothing compared to what Mozart had.
He didn’t appreciate what he had. He felt that God did not love him. God did not bless him.
He hated God who bestowed such a great talent to a person who was immature, silly, and obscene. He renounced God and vowed to take revenge on God by destroying Mozart.
God gave all of you wonderful talents. Don’t measure the worth of your talents by comparing with others.
How much talents you have is not as important as how you enjoy your talents and do something worthwhile with what you have.
When you enjoy what you have and start using it creatively, you can be content. Being content and being complacent are two different things. Being content is to appreciate what you have no matter how big or how small it may be.
Content in Little and Plenty
Yesterday, my grandkids came to our house. It is a small condo. 11 people were there and we could barely sit around. But the kids were different.
They went into the bedroom and created their own game. They didn’t let the environment limit them. They knew how to use their environment creatively to have fun.
It is because their thinking is not tainted yet. It doesn’t matter the environment. They know how to have fun, how to be happy.
That was Paul’s attitude.
Not that I am referring to being in need; for I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. (Philippians 4:11-12)
He knew what it was to have little, and what it was to have plenty. Whether he had a lot or not, that was not what was important.
He knew how to accept his situation and be comfortable with it. And he enjoyed what he had.
After he said this beautiful phrase, he concluded with this.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)
That is what being content looks like.
Confidence In Your Treasures
Being content not only makes you appreciate what you have but also gives you this confidence to do something with it.
You don’t lose confidence because what you have is little compared to what others have. You have confidence to do whatever you want to do with it.
Having a lot is not as important as enjoying what you have, being content with it, and doing something wonderful with it.
Being complacent is different.
You don’t appreciate what you have. You don’t know how to enjoy what you have. You don’t see the value of what you have. You just live your life as though you have nothing. You hide your talents in the ground and do nothing about it.
Let me talk to those who are 50 and over. If the years you have are talents, you have less than those who are in their 20s. But don’t think that your good years are over. Do something meaningful with what you have. Don’t waste your time by hiding it in the ground.
Let me talk to those who are 50 and younger. Appreciate what you have. Do not compare yourself with others. See the significance of what you have. Find treasures within yourself. And do something wonderful with the talents you have.
All of you, be content but don’t be complacent. God has given you this life. This precious life. That is the most precious talent you have. Don’t waste it.
Do something worthwhile. Enjoy it but don’t exhaust it. Love it but don’t chase after every craving. Be thankful but don’t settle for less.
Feeling full, abundant, and satisfied doesn’t come from having a lot. It comes from your deep gratitude for what you have.
Life is not about doing better than others. Life is about enjoying what you have and doing your best with what you have.
Be free from belittling yourself. Be free from self-pity. Be free from feeling small. Be free from fear of not being able to make it.
God gave you a talent and he will help you when you try to do something with it.