In life are you making life investments or simply trying to preserve the status quo? If we’re honest, many people are simply trying to maintain a certain comfort level. To do anything else would require risk-taking. The majority of personality temperaments are risk-averse. Taking risks is not something we are comfortable with. This investment versus preservation is not only about money. It permeates almost all areas of our lives.
A good example is given to us in The Holy Bible by Jesus Himself as He shares the parable of the talents recorded in Matthew 25:14-30 and Luke 19:11-27. While in this parable Jesus is using a form of currency (talents) as His topic, I want us to look at our true talents as we think of investing or preserving. Being a good steward of every talent and gift God has given us requires moving beyond prudently preserving the status quo.
Investing is putting to use your God-given talents, money, and skills. God desires you to put those to use for his kingdom. When you invest, you are taking a risk. You are risking whether your investment will bear fruit (kingdom fruit in this case). But risk-taking also could mean exposing yourself to ridicule and walking away empty-handed. Even that is okay. Jesus said they are not rejecting you; they are rejecting Him. It is better to be commended by God and ridiculed by man than the reverse.
The master in the parable commended the two servants who doubled the investment given them. “Well done,” he said and gave them even more. However, it was only words of condemnation for the one who had hidden his talent. I do not know about you but I would much rather hear words about me like, “Well done!” as opposed to words such as slothful, wicked, and lazy.
One great lesson for us from this parable is that God is not pleased when we try to avoid risk to maintain the status quo. God is not pleased when we hide or bury our God-given gifts and talents to preserve our preferred level of security and desired pleasure. What are you hiding, avoiding risk to stay in your area of comfort and pleasure?
Regardless of who you are or where you consider yourself to be in regard to giftedness, God has blessed you with certain gifts and talents to be invested for His kingdom and glory. Each time you invest one of your talents, you do bring God glory. Each time you invest, God is gladly preparing a “Well done…” statement for you. According to your actions, is God preparing words of commendation or condemnation?
Your talent investment should not only be considered inside the church. God is providing opportunities for investment in the marketplace – your workplace, neighborhood, family, and everywhere you find yourself this week. What is your next step of investment over preservation?