Special Gifts?

Category: Zoe's Blog Published: Sunday, 02 August 2015 Written by Zoe Kimmel

(Matthew 25:14-29)

Exercise equipment doesn’t work unless you use it. Blogging doesn’t happen unless you write. But you already knew this. I, on the other hand, was powerfully reminded of these truths today… thus, this blog. (Don’t worry… the exercise equipment is still in the closet. J )

This morning’s reflection included reading the parable of the good steward/servant from the Gospel of Matthew. I’ve known this story for fifty-plus years and it has always made me feel uncomfortable, even somewhat guilty. Today I realized the reason: money, or lack thereof.

Don’t get me wrong. I know this story is about more than cash. I teach it to young people regularly, emphasizing the idea of talents that can be used for the greater good. But when I read it for myself, it’s always about money.

I am, by far, the youngest of three children. By the time I came around, my parents were in a better financial position than when my siblings were small. Although we were a working class family, I always lived in a comfortable house with my own bedroom. As the youngest, I was spoiled enough to get things without a lot of effort on my part. I never wanted a lot of money, but I also never saved a lot. As a result I am, by far, the least financially secure of the siblings.

Enter the parable of the good steward. The first two servants took the money the master gave them, invested it wisely, and returned it two-fold. The third servant was afraid, hid the money, and made no gain for the master.

I am the third servant. When I read this parable, I think about how little cash I have or donate. Although I don’t generally worry about money, I do worry that I won’t measure up to those faithful servants who tithe, who support all sorts of ministries with their contributions. I worry that I will be called the lazy servant.

All is not lost, however.   When I leave money out of the picture, things look much better. In just the past two weeks, I’ve had four families out to our little homestead to introduce them to our animals, ecology and love of nature… tending the spirit through language, land and love. I’ve volunteered for a 4-H event. I’ve had a small group of girls stay overnight for some in-depth, faith-based discussion of important issues that impact their lives. I’ve connected online to encourage several people facing various challenges. And now I’m writing. In short, I’m using my special gifts of teaching and writing to serve the greater good.

Being a good steward isn’t always about money. It is about identifying and using our talents to further God’s kingdom. Don’t compare them with others. Don’t worry that you won’t measure up. Don’t be afraid. Just offer up what you have to give. With God’s blessing, you and I will also hear those beautiful words, “Well done, you good and faithful servant.” And that would, indeed, be a special gift!

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