“From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” (Luke 12:48)
Jesus is talking to his disciples about the importance of a servant being watchful and found doing what is expected of him when his master returns. He says the more responsibility that is given to you, the more that will be expected of you.
This is about our accountability to God for the life, time, talents, responsibilities, and resources he has given to us. As in the parable of the talents, the master’s servants were expected to multiply the money that was entrusted to their care, not simply preserve it.
God creates us in unique and infinite ways. No two of us are the same. He creates each of us with unique physical, intellectual and spiritual abilities and gifts “to work and take care” of the garden of his creation, and to love and serve him and one another in doing so. (Genesis 2:15)
I have a friend whose son has been a high school choral director. He has a unique ability to get the best of music out of whatever musical group he is directing, either choral or orchestral. He is now taking graduate work to hone the talents God has given him. I have no doubt that someday he will be the conductor of a major philharmonic orchestra or choral group.
As a father of five adult children, it is blessing to see each of them use gifts that God has given them in addition to caring for their respective spouses and children. To one has been given the gift of mercy and love which she uses to volunteer for numerous needs in her church and community. To another has been given a way to teach history and make it come alive for her students. To another has been given the compassion and understanding to oversee an inclusion program in a Catholic high school for students with intellectual disabilities.
To another, after working in software development for several years has discovered, along with his wife, their special gift to capture unique images of marriage in a new photography business. To our youngest daughter born with Down syndrome, God has given the gifts of purity of heart and love, and a special memory for dates, for which she reminds us of the birthdays of every member of our family, including her thirteen nephews and nieces.
What’s important is not what gifts God has given to each of us, but that we are fully using the gifts he has entrusted to us for his purpose.
Being retired these last several years, God has given me the gift of time. How am I using this gift? When you are older, you have to fight the lie that you are limited in what you can do and that no one wants to listen to you anymore. However, the needs for volunteers are almost endless. So, I have chosen a few things that are an in keeping with my past experience in work and ministry. As they say in the old western movies, I hope to die with my boots on.
Whatever our age, our goal should be to hear the words of the Master, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” (Mt. 25:21)