Dear Fathers, Friends in Christ,
Come, share your master’s joy. (Matthew 25:21)
We may think of “talent” today as our abilities and gifts, but in Jesus’ time, a talent was the equivalent of about eighty pounds of silver. That translated to about twenty years’ wages. This means that the servant who received five talents was handed as much money as a laborer could earn in one hundred years!
It’s no wonder that at least one of the servants was intimidated. Maybe when you read this parable, you get nervous too. That was a big gift—and a big responsibility! Sure, a couple of the servants immediately invested what was given them and made lots of money. But maybe you’re not so bold. Will the master throw you out because you have buried what he gave you?
Don’t worry. God isn’t looking for risky big-time investments. All he’s looking for is a response. Like the master in today’s parable, our heavenly Father is generous. Every day he pours out the “currency” of his grace and life in us. He is so eager to see his investment grow that he multiplies even the smallest effort we make to respond to that grace. Remember how quickly the other two servants’ investments grew!
In practical terms, this can mean many things. Let’s say you’re impressed by one of the readings or the homily at Mass. Let it impact how you talk to your kids on the way home or how you interact with your spouse over dinner. In your prayer time today, you might be more deeply convinced of God’s love. Go out and show that love to someone else, maybe by putting aside your own priorities to give someone your undivided attention.
No matter how you do it, every time you respond to God’s touch, your investment doubles, and you receive more grace. It’s an ever-increasing cycle. As your investment grows, you experience more of the Father’s joy, and that joy makes you want to invest even more.
You won’t be the only one changing, by the way. You will influence other people. They will respond to God’s grace in you, and his kingdom will continue to grow!
That’s the kind of “return on investment” the Father loves to see.
“Father, I want to respond to your grace. You generously give to me; let me generously share with others so that it multiplies throughout the world.”
Father Ed Bakker
Anglican Catholic Church / Original Province
Mission of Saint Aidan of Lindisfarne
Launceston on Tasmania