Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of November 10, 2008
Out of the silence, find the talents God has given
By LASHA MORNINGSTAR
Western Catholic Reporter
My beloved confessor hears the same words each and every time. “Bless me father for I have sinned. I am not using the talents the good Lord God gave me.”
His response is gentle, saying that that could be said of many.
But my anguish is not assuaged and stays real, raw and rankles within my heart.
Matthew’s Gospel this week underlines the verity of my disquiet as he tells the story of a master’s distribution of talents to his slaves. Use your talents and you are blessed. Waste or bury them and you are banished.
Straight talk. Time to walk God’s talk. For we are like snowflakes falling from winter’s sky – each one unique, each with their own design.
God’s finger touched us, gifting us with talents, blessing us with his plan. But how do we know what his plan or will is? It’s so simple, isn’t it, to blast along life’s secular highway, pedal to the metal, hurtling towards a destination you, your family/friends, teachers, society decreed for you.
Sure we might think we have checked it out with God with ritualized prayer, chit-chatting with those who have their own agenda for us, ignoring that queasy unease within.
We stifle it with all the “logical” reasons.
Recognize any of these?
But that would mean changing my whole way of living. I would have to give up my seniority. My family would be shattered. I’d have to go back to school. The economy scares me.
These are all valid reasons right?
Not if you believe Matthew’s message.
The master is coming to settle accounts. He listens and rewards those who use their gifts. He rages and punishes those who bury their talents — his gift to them.
Again the excuses sputter out as we mutter, “How do I know what God wants me to do?”
Answer. Take a time out.
Step off the secular highway. Search out a place of silence. Toss away that mask society demands. And behold, you are the child of God that he created.
Searching for God’s path means talking to him. Calling it prayer can make it easier to do. Honesty counts. So does sharing our passions — emotions and desires we feel when we are asked, “What would you do with your life if money was no object?”
Now comes the listening.
Maybe we think we hear nothing from God, shuffle off with the dismissal, “God is silent” and clamber back on the treadmill.
But God’s silence is only his giving us space and time to hear ourselves, discover our own truths. Sure, this can be a hard slog as we battle through a lifetime of living up to others’ expectations and society’s realities.
Watch and learn
As God watches us surrendering to his will, we must be alert to what happens around us.
Someone mentions a book. A university commercial touches that hidden part of us. We listen when someone says to us, “You have a healing touch.” We acknowledge that ache for a child.
God’s gift of life came with a contract — that we follow his will.
As God called to Isaiah and he replied, “Here I am” and the hymn lyrics say “I will go Lord — if you lead me,” know that his path for each one of us is there for us to find . . . and follow.
You died for me Jesus. Let me live for you.