As we enter a New Year and time of introspection, we should think about a new season of increase. Often when discussions begin about increase we naturally go the material side of things but we also need to think of increase as it relates to the Kingdom of God. We, as the Body of Christ, are an outpost of the Kingdom of God in this world.
My mind goes to the parable Jesus shared in Matthew 25:14-29 about the man traveling to a far country and delivered some talents to his servants—to one he gave five, to another he gave two, and lastly he gave a servant one talent. When he returned the one who had the five gained five more, the one who had the two had gained two more, and to his disappointment the one who had received one had only one to show.
We need to take this parable to heart. Two servants according to their abilities increased what had been given to them. One servant out of fear of losing the one, hid it in the earth to protect it. I am sure there are many people in the church who are fearful of losing what they have whether it is money, property, or even church members. In the Kingdom of God, fear is not an attribute we need to coddle. From the parable it is obvious, the Lord would prefer us to risk our talent than to sit on it out of fear.
So what do we do? We allow God to stretch us. Do something you have never done. Put something on the line for the Kingdom of God. We need to risk something for God—risk is actually an element of faith. I believe God wants us to put ourselves out there to the point; if He does not show up, we look like a fool. That point certainly thins the herd.
In the financial world, the greatest risk has the potential for the greatest profit. Ultra conservative investment has the smallest potential for profit. I am not advocating reckless behavior or investing; I am simply saying, in order for us to fully please God as an individual or as a local church, we have to put something on the line. Many wilting Christians and slowly dying churches have their talent buried in the ground lest they lose what they have.
God calls us forward in faith; he calls us to put something in our hands at risk for the Kingdom of God. We need to remember, there will be a day of accounting when the One we answer to, is the One who invented math. These words should be our goal, “His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord’” (Matthew 25:21 NKJV).
Harry L. Whitt