For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.
Matthew 25:29 (NKJV)
Jesus shared a parable to describe the grace and blessing of opportunities that are given to each one of us. It’s the parable of a wealthy man who went away, entrusting talents, or sums of money, to three servants. One is given five talents, another is given two, and a third is given one. The man gives them no instructions, no suggestions, no leads, no expectations. He just departs. We are told nothing regarding the man’s journey. We are simply told he entrusts talents to them and goes his way.
The servant with five talents becomes industrious. He is wise, he is shrewd, and he is creative. Whatever he does, he doubles the five talents into ten. The same happens with the servant given two: he turns it into four. The third servant, who is given one talent, digs a hole in the ground and buries it. He does this because when he weighs his fear of the owner against the potential for opportunity, his fear is greater.
The owner returns unannounced, and he asks for an accounting. Both servants who doubled what was given to them are rewarded. But the one who buried what was given to him is reprimanded and condemned.
The focus of this parable is certainly on the one who decided not to take advantage of the opportunity given to him. Jesus shares this with us to teach that we should not bury the gifts and graces and blessings and redemption given to us. The kingdom of God is for those who take advantage of kingdom-extended opportunities.
This story serves as a reminder that faith is intended to push us to reach for things that are beyond our reach, but not beyond our trust. In trusting Jesus, we become creative and courageous in the stewardship of the blessings He has given.
What will you do with the opportunities He has entrusted you with?