A few days ago I reviewed my invested money. I’m not a rich man but I do look for a decent return on what I have accumulated by the grace of God. I choose to invest rather conservatively. Some funds offer the potential of larger returns, but they also include the possibility of significant losses because they include greater risk. That money needs to be working for me, gaining value for that time in my life when I am no longer capable of producing an income.
Did you know that the Lord has given YOU resources and desires a return on His investment?
In one of His teaching stories about God’s rule (about the way the Kingdom works), Jesus told about a master who was going away for a long time. He called three of his trusted employees and gave each of them some of his wealth to manage while he was away. The amount they received was appropriate to their abilities. One received 5 shares, another got 2 shares, and the last was entrusted with 1 share. The master was not being unfair, he was wise! “The servant who received the five bags of silver began to invest the money and earned five more. The servant with two bags of silver also went to work and earned two more. But the servant who received the one bag of silver dug a hole in the ground and hid the master’s money.” (Matthew 25:16-18, NLT)
Two of them were diligent and resourceful and over time their efforts paid off with a good return. It is that third one that catches my attention. He dug a hole! “At least the money is safe,” he told himself, excusing his failure to work. How did the master look at this choice? First, we learn that the first two were equally commended. Their faithfulness, despite major difference in return, was recognized. This master was truly fair, honoring diligence, not just results.
But, the one who dug a hole? He earned nothing but scorn! “Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate. I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.’ “But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate, why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’ “Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver.” (Matthew 25:24-28, NLT) Sobering, isn’t it?
What resources has the Lord invested in you?
What opportunities has He placed in your life?
Are you diligent or are you just digging a hole?
When we stand before Christ Jesus, the King, in glory He will be totally fair and He will see it all. Let’s make it our desire to use what He has given – health, spiritual gifts, family, community, wealth – to advance His cause. Instead of focusing exclusively on results (that gets discouraging), let’s focus on doing what each of us can do this day.
The word from the Word – “Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
Don’t dig a hole for His treasure!