From the Parable of the Talents you must see the hand of God in it all, for he is the one who has entrusted all these things to you. And behind the hand of God, you must see his confidence in you, his trust, his optimism. God is the one who has called you to walk this path, and he is the one who has called you to walk it faithfully.
The Parable of the Talents is one of the best-known and best-loved of all the parables Jesus left us. It tells of a man who is going on a journey and, who, before he sets out, distributes his wealth among his servants for safekeeping. To one he gives five talents, to another two, and to another just one. (A talent, for sake of context, is about 20 years’ of wages for a laborer.) It tells how each of these servants responds to what is entrusted to him: Two of the servants invest the money wisely and double it, while the other simply buries the money and then later returns it as-is. The first two receive their master’s approval while the third receives his condemnation.
This parable leads to many legitimate applications and often challenges us to be faithful with what the Lord has entrusted to us, whether that is the gospel itself, or the gifts, talents, money, responsibilities, or opportunities we have been given. God entrusts us with so much and it falls to us, as his servants, to be faithful with it all. We can expect that as we are faithful, we will know God’s approval and reward. “For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance.”
Hidden in plain sight is a simple observation: the servants are never offered a choice in their stewardship. The master does not come to them to ask, “How much of my wealth do you think you’re capable of handling?” He never checks in to inquire, “How would you feel about being given the full five talents? Do you think you can handle five, or would you prefer to have just two?”