What does it mean to be a steward? A steward is another word for manager. Now I realize the title manager is not quite as sexy as leader. To be a bold leader sounds inspiring, while manager sounds a little mundane. But the fact is – Jesus describes Christians as managers in whom God entrusts to manage what He’s given.
To communicate this concept Jesus told a parable. Three servants were given different amounts of money – referred to as talents. A talent was a large amount of gold, silver or copper weighing close to 75 pounds. In other words, a talent was a huge amount of wealth! So what happened? Each servant was given an amount of wealth to manage – based upon his individual abilities. Don’t miss this: Jesus was demonstrating that while we do not all have equal abilities, we all should have equal opportunities and responsibilities.
Time passed and the man returned to see what these servants had done with all they were entrusted. The first two servants doubled their wealth, earning the man’s equal praise and increased responsibility. The third servant, however, hid his talent out of fear, neither losing nor increasing the wealth. The man was unhappy with this third servant and took back what he had entrusted and gave it to the man with the most talents. He gave it to the one he knew would make the most of it.
What was Jesus teaching in this parable? Firstly, we are all created unique and unlike anyone else. Secondly, Jesus knows our skills and entrusts us within those abilities. Thirdly, God doesn’t compare us to one another. He judges us equally according to what we have done with all that He has entrusted to us. In other words, God wants us to make the most of what we’re given, whether it’s money, abilities or opportunities. If we aren’t willing to do that, it will be taken away. So how are you doing managing what God has entrusted to you?