“Using Our Talents”
“Using Our Talents”
Have you ever stopped and thought about all the different jobs that are required to have success in a common business or interest? For example, in Japan, to make sure the subway functions and successfully operates, there are different jobs associated with the operation. There are Crew Members, Train Engineers, Utility Clerks, Dispatchers, Welders, Mechanics, etc. But one of the most bizarre jobs is that of the Oshiya, or train pushers. In the subway system the role of the Oshiya is to literally push people onto subway cars during rush hour to ensure everyone can get on board and no one will be left behind. At one point they were so good with their job they were able to take train cars to 220% capacity.
The church is no different. 1 Corinthians 12:27 notes “Now you are the body of Christ, and each of you is a part of it”. If you start reading at the beginning of Chapter 12, in vs 4 it notes “There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.”
We all have a talent. You have a talent. I have a talent. Your talent and my talent may not be the same talent. For example, none of you have ever heard me lead singing in a worship setting-there is a reason for that! That is not my talent. I have recognized that and try to use my abilities in another setting, which in turn brings Glory to God. I am thankful for the men who can lead singing and use that talent. It helps bring our worship into focus and not distract from it.
Song leading, Prayer, Scripture Reading, Presiding, and Preaching are all very visual and not all of us have the talent to work in that capacity. The subway operates successfully with many people fulfilling roles that are never visually seen. But, in order for the church to function and to operate and for our membership to thrive, there are more roles that need to be fulfilled beyond the 5 visual roles we see each Sunday morning. 1 Peter 4:8-10 notes “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in various forms.” The scripture notes to “use whatever” talent you have received. This indicates that you have a talent, even if you think you do not.
Take a moment and read the Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25:14-28. Notice that the master never grumbles about the number of talents each servant has. The master is upset that all were given a talent, but one did not use the talent at all, and that one was cast out.
Collectively we are like the subway system. For everyone to get on board and not be left behind we ALL have a job to do. I am sure on our train ride to heaven you do not want to see anyone left behind. You never know how your talent might help push a person off the platform and onto the train- so use it for God!