“For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away.
He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money.
Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’
And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me two talents; here, I have made two talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’
He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours.’ But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
There are times in our Christian walk when we have a vision of what God wants us to do, we know that it's His will, but we are waiting to see the manifestation of this vision in our lives. And waiting... and waiting. But what are we to do while we wait for the Lord?
In the parable of the talents, we see three servants who were given talents by their lord with no instructions on how to use them, no warning on how long the lord would be away, and no command on what the servants should do while he was gone. He didn't tell them this was a test. He didn't tell them there would be rewards or consequences.
Two of the servants used their talents and worked to make their lord more prosperous. And one buried his talent in the ground to protect it and then did his own thing. And when the lord came back, he rewarded the two and punished the one.
If we take this parable as an example of waiting upon the Lord, what should we do while we wait? Sitting around, watching Netflix, and scrolling Facebook don't seem like the best options - those would be akin to what the third servant did. The lord knew that this servant was prone to passivity and laziness, so he only gave him one talent at the start.
What God wants is for us to be growing His kingdom. He wants us to use the talents He's given us to know Him and to make Him known. These are the keys to growing the kingdom.
“This is eternal life: to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you sent”
“But nothing, not even my life, is more important than my completing my mission. This is nothing other than the ministry I received from the Lord Jesus: to testify about the good news of God’s grace” (Acts 20:24).
So while we're waiting, God wants us to be productive. He wants us to draw closer to Him and get to know Him better through prayer and diligent study of His word. He wants us to rely upon Him while we battle our personal sins and tear down the strongholds that keep us from better, greater fellowship with Him.
This creates our personal testimony. As we overcome the world and our flesh, we have a reason for our faith. People will see the changes in our lives and the things which set us apart from the rest of the word because of the deliverance to abundant life we have in Jesus. This is how we make Him known. More people are drawn to Christ from one person walking in freedom and fellowship with God than a million tracts. Our testimony and the blood of the Lamb are the two things that help us triumph over Satan:
They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony;
So what kind of testimony did the third servant have? Since he buried his talent and spent his days doing as he felt, I doubt he had the kind of testimony that would bring glory to his lord.
I desire the kind of testimony that brings God glory and greater honor. And I know this can only be done by overcoming the strongholds in my life and by relying completely upon God to tear them down. But it's difficult, it's not easy, and too often, I want a quick fix. Waiting upon the Lord is hard, it's work, and it's not something we can do passively.
So today, my prayer is that we will chose to be productive for the Lord. I pray that we will grow in the Lord and gain a testimony that defeats the devil. I pray that we will get to know Him better and better each day so that it becomes easier to wait for Him because we trust Him to know the timing that is best for us. Oh Lord, let us overcome our passivity and make choices today which will further your kingdom. Amen.