THE SERVANT GENERAL
ON SERVANT LEADERSHIP
UTILIZING OUR TALENTS
Today’s reading: Matthew 25:14-30
the parable of the talents, “a man who was going on
a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions
to them.” (Mt 25:14). Jesus is the man-God who has gone
on ahead to heaven, but who will be back at the end of time.
We are the servants whom Jesus calls. He entrusts his possessions
to us, that is, he entrusts us with the gift of salvation,
already won on the cross, but which we need to bring to others
through the work of evangelization. Further, he entrusts every
good thing to us -- our lives, our families, our possessions,
the environment, his grace and blessings which he imparts
to others through us.
servant is called and entrusted with a talent -- to some five,
to another two, still to another one (Mt 25:15a). It is not
the number of talents that is important, as we are just called
to serve with whatever resources we have. What is required
is faithfulness. We are to use whatever talent we have. We
are not to just dig a hole in the ground and bury our master’s
money (Mt 25:18).
Jesus comes once again, he will settle accounts with his servants
(Mt 25:19), that is, we are held accountable, and it is to
Jesus to whom we will account. Those who use their talents
will be extolled, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
(Mt 25:21a,23a). Those who do not make use of their talents
will be condemned.
the punishment of being thrown into the darkness outside where
there will be wailing and grinding of teeth (Mt 25:30) is
severe. Why is that? For simply doing nothing? Yes! It is
precisely for doing nothing, when we have been entrusted with
the greatest gift ever, that of salvation. Jesus has entrusted
his possessions to his servants. Jesus has made himself dependent
upon his servants to bring the salvation he won on the cross
to others. It is all about the eternal well-being of those
whom Jesus loves so much that he gave his very own life for
them. If souls are lost due to our non-use of what is entrusted
to us, then we face a severe condemnation.
The call to servanthood and especially to servant leadership
is a very serious call. How should we respond?
we make use of our gifts, whatever these may be. Not everyone
is gifted in the same way, but everyone can make a contribution
through the use of his gift for the work of the Kingdom. Whether
you are the preacher at a large assembly, or you are the one
who sweeps the floor after the event, your contribution is
needed and important.
we need to take seriously the work given us by our Master,
who is “a demanding person” (Mt 25:24). We are
called to give our all, to give our very lives. We are to
expend ourselves for the cause of Christ. We are to follow
in his footsteps, which lead all the way to the cross. Jesus
calls us to deny our very selves and to take up our crosses.
Having given us the privilege to serve him, Jesus demands
nothing less than our all, in the very imitation of himself.
we should not allow fear to paralyze us or keep us from using
our talents (Mt 25:25). Jesus after all just looks to our
faithfulness and not to the results. It is up to God to cause
the growth, to bring fruit out of our efforts. In our work,
we know we have the fullness of the grace of God, and the
strength that comes from Him. We are just instruments. We
make ourselves available for His use, and place our trust
fully in Him. We need never be afraid.
we need to realize that it is when we use our gifts that we
will grow richer in them and will be blessed more. “For
to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich”
(Mt 25:29a). When the Master sees his servant producing fruit
and being faithful, then he gives him greater responsibilities
(Mt 25:21b,23b). Jesus tests us. If we respond, he blesses
us. If we give of ourselves, he gives us even more. The converse
is true. If we do not make use of our talent, we would lose
even the little that we have, for God does not give talents
just to be wasted (Mt 25:28). How tragic that would be, when
“from the one who has not, even what he has will be
taken away.” (Mt 25:29b).
Let us go about the Master’s business. Let us make use
of our talents and expend ourselves for Christ. At the end
of time, may we be found faithful and worthy. And may we hear
our Master’s sweet words, “Come, share your master’s
joy.” (Mt 25:21c,23c).
download file, click on icon
Servant Leadership (Part 25) [PDF]