The parable of the talents has always caught my attention. It encourages me while also confuses me. I feel ready: God, I want to obey! I want to be fearless! I want to boldly do whatever You ask!
But then I get confused because I wonder...what is it You are asking me?
But I think I only ask that when I'm overthinking things.
I think we get too caught up in the "talents" metaphor. I think we almost think we need to figure out what the talents are that God has given us before we do anything at all.
But really, we don't have to wonder too much what it is God is asking of us. Love God, love your neighbor, and go make disciples. We already have a mandate!
I think that as we grow and mature we will learn our strengths, our personalities, our gifts, our talents...but the best way to do that is to just obey!
It's the "talents" metaphor that can really mess with our heads...like for example, I'm working as a hostess at a restaurant right now. I think I'm doing pretty well at my job but it's certainly not what I feel gifted in. Some people dream of working in a restaurant, like my sister who wants to own her own one day, but that's not me! I like to write, sing, draw...I like to focus on relationships...I don't like the pressures of a busy restaurant environment.
It's not my dream job, but it's where I am. If I get caught up in "these aren't my talents" I may forget that I can still be obeying God where I am! In fact, that's exactly the point.
While I could focus on how my current situation isn't my dream situation, I could consider what it is that actually makes me suited for where I am. I am good at customer service! I love talking to customers, and forming relationships with regulars. I like the times I get to encourage my coworkers and hear about their lives. I like to be the person slicing the cake for someone when they've just come back from finding out their dad has cancer (yes, that happened). I like to have a reason to pray every single day: Lord, shine bright in me.
I want to use my talents...the areas I am passionate about...to answer God's call, and I do. But I should never think that's the only way I can obey God. God has me where I am for a reason, at my job, shopping in Target, out to breakfast, leading worship at church, blogging, shopping at Trader Joe's, cooking dinner, serving as maid of honor, living at home, etc.
He knows what He's doing and the best way for me to believe that is to obey Him.