Unwrap and use your God-given talents
When people say to me that stewardship is not just about money I
usually am suspicious. Often they say it because they have not been as
generous with their money as they have been with their time.
But the statement is really true. And it is about more than just
donating your time to worthy causes. Stewardship of life is about
developing the talents that God gave you and using them to God's
I watched some of American Idol the other night. (My daughter
was with me. It is not a show I usually watch otherwise.)
I was impressed with the mostly young people who are putting
themselves out there and really exploring what they can do. I am
always impressed with that because of certain small gifts of mine that
I have always been afraid to let anyone see.
But then I started thinking about all the people sitting home watching
Idol instead of singing in their own church choir or developing
their own talents. I wondered about all the people who should be
running for the school board or learning a language or studying an
instrument or whatever talent they have that they should be developing
If watching American Idol inspires you to find out what you are
made of and what you are capable of, then God bless it. If it just
keeps you from exploring who you are and what gifts God has given you
to use in this world, then turn it off and get out there. That is,
after you look inside. Who are you and who is this God who has made
God has richly gifted you. Don't let fear keep you back. God will be
with you. Don't let false modesty hold you back. They call them
gifts for a reason. You can't take credit so dot worry about it. And
don't let exploring God's gifts be just a spectator sport. Turn off
the TV if you need to and find out what you have to offer.
Lord, We pray about this as we do about our
Blessed are you,
C O Lord our God, maker of all things.
Through your goodness you have blessed us with these gifts. With them
we offer ourselves to your service and dedicate our lives to the care
and redemption of all that you have made, for the sake of him who gave
himself for us, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
From Sundays and Seasons.com. Copyright 2006
Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual
2006, The Rev. Dana Reardon. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Email her at
The Rev. Dana Reardon is pastor at St.
Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, Warwick, RI. A lifelong Lutheran, she
came to ordained ministry after 21 years in nursing, mostly in pediatric
intensive care. She graduated from Lutheran Theological Seminary at
Philadelphia in 1998 and served 4 ½ years in Upstate New York before
becoming a New Englander. She is still trying to understand the
accent. While in the Upstate New York Synod she chaired the Stewardship
Team. That began her fascination with what makes stewards -- and more,
what makes for generosity.
has three amazing daughters: Pastor Reardon says much of what she knows of
life she learned from them.