Our readings these last couple weeks are preparing us for next Sunday’s feast of Christ the King, which ends the Church year. Last week our readings warned us, with the parable of the wise and foolish virgins, to be prepared to meet Christ at the end of our lives. Our Gospel this weekend, the last Gospel before we hear the parable of the Last Judgment on the feast of Christ the King, gives us a hint on how we can be prepared.
The Gospel presents 3 servants, each being given talents to take care of (one received 5, one received 3, and the last received 1). Each one received something and was expected to use it. The master was not comparing the servants: he did not expect the one who received only 1 talent to produce what the others did. He just wanted each one to use what was given him to him to produce a reasonable profit.
What has God given you? Each of us has time. After I take care of the things I have to do, how do I use my time? Is it all for me? Or do I spend some time on others, such as visiting the homebound or volunteering at a food pantry? The same with money. After I take care of my responsibilities and basic needs, do I spend all the money left over on me? Or am I generous where there is a need? Finally, the talents and skills we have been given – and all of us have skills. Do we use them where they are needed and can help others? For example, I am not very sensate so I am not good at decorating (they don’t even want me in the church, when they are decorating). But I am a good writer and teacher. I can use those skills to build up the community and help others.
I invite us all to look at the gifts that God has given us, even the smallest. When we all cooperate together and share the talents we have, our worship space gets cleaned, our flowers and grounds look wonderful, warm personalities answer the rectory door and phone,
fellowship Sunday happens, music makes our worship special, the Word of God is proclaimed, people are welcomed to our services, the food pantries are stocked, wells are built in Tanzania, etc., etc.
All of us have God-given gifts and even the smallest are needed. Let us resolve to use our gifts of time, talent, and treasure to the best of our ability to fulfil our responsibilities and to serve others. Then we will hear the words that the servants heard in today’s Gospel: Well done, my good and faithful servant…Come, share your master's joy.
Church sign of the week: There’s only one way to get through some things: together.