Today’s reading is a return to the Gospel of Matthew and the well-known Parable of the Talents. The master is about to embark on a journey and while he is away he entrusts his servants with talents; the first with five talents, the second with two, and the third one. Scripture scholars debate on the exact amount of a talent and any definitive number is lost to us today. The point is that it was a significantly large sum.
Even more important than the amount, God has given each of us unique gifts and has charged us to invest in making the kingdom of God present and relevant to others. Fear and anxiety, as they did with the third servant, are temptations that arise in all of us. I have experienced both throughout my life since my early youth and the good news is that I have been improving as I continue my journey with God. Through my growing relationship with him I continue to access the courage to rise above those temptations, such as speaking in public.
Had I given in to anxiety, I would not be a teacher, nor a deacon today. Anxieties and fears still arise for me and what I have been learning most recently is to resist suppressing or fighting these emotions. Instead, breath into and embrace them and seek to harness their energy in a more positive way. Time and again, I have turned to the Holy Spirit and he has walked with me.
When I first embarked on this new evangelization of sharing the Gospel through social media, I was not sure how it would be received or if it would be received. Yet, again I trusted that it was God inspiring me to step out in faith, and he has given me the words to type each day; even on those days in which I sit and stare at a blank white screen. 1.243 consecutive, daily posts later, is a testament that the Holy Spirit (I pray) has continued to guide me.
Each of us have been graced with talent! God has something for all of us to share in our own unique way. Trust in those intuitions that God is inspiring you with. Say yes to sharing the unique gift(s) you have been given to help to bring light and healing to a tired and weary world. If we cling or sit on them they will wither and fade, if we share them they will multiply. The best way is to start small, take baby steps. Each time we step out of our comfort zone we take a risk. True enough, but God will provide the means and he will send others to support and help us to fulfill what he calls each of us to accomplish. Another point that may help ease anxiety when it arises, is to realize that it is God’s work and not our own. We are inspired to express and not impress through our words, actions, and/or faces. My prayers are with you as we continue to journey together to bring about the joy, mercy, love, and glory of God to others!
Photo from my first Mass, seven years ago already, after being ordained. St Peter pray for us!