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Get into the Game!
Photo: Thomas Picard
Do you have a talent that is sitting on a shelf—or buried in the ground, as Jesus describes in his parable from Matthew 25? There’s a principle that is true for any investor who reads Robert Kiyosaki books or who has spiritual abilities they might use in God’s Church.

Verse 16: "The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. So also, the one with the two talents gained two more." There’s a Greek nuance in the King James Version where the master hands out these bags of money, and then straightway took his journey. He gave them the funds at LAX as he got out of the company car. “Here, guys. See what you can do. I’ll see you when I see you.”

But some scholars think that straightway, which is in verse 15 talking about the master, really should have been in 16, referring to the investors. The man with five talents staightway got to work. He didn’t say, “Well, it’s 3 p.m.; by the time we get back to the office it’ll be almost 5 p.m. Plus today’s Thursday. I’ll start looking around for hedge funds on Monday.” No, these two guys stop on Century Boulevard and pick up a Wall Street Journal. They begin calling around on their cell phones even before they get to the 405 freeway. What stocks are hot right now? Are pork bellies a good thing to buy? (Actually, considering these workers, that probably wasn’t it.) But they determined to get into the game immediately.

Years ago, I personally got bit by a delayed investment. Lisa and I bought a new house, and a personal friend who was a mortgage banker agreed to handle our loan for us. So we arranged for a Friday closing; we moved out of our old place Friday morning and got into our new home Friday afternoon. I remember collapsing amid the mess just as the sun went down.

Three Days of Interest Lost

Well, I hate to say this - my good friend messed up. Some paper didn’t get signed and the loan didn’t fund until the following Monday. And suddenly, after writing a gazillion escrow checks for this and that, I had to also pay the escrow company three days of rent for the fact that the builder didn’t have use of those funds for 72 hours. Ouch! Three days’ worth of interest was lost, and I ended up paying it. That gave me a renewed appreciation for what this Bible story is telling us: when God gives us talents to use for Him, we should get the chips on the table ASAP. Don’t delay.

Just think of the talent pool represented by the “Body of Christ.” Think about just those who in recent years have drifted away from your own church. If all people who have ever worn the badge of our faith, who wore the Christian coat of arms on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, were fully invested – their time, talent, gifts, presence—we cannot imagine what God’s church would be like.

The bell just rang and the market’s open. So get going!

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By David Smith. Copyright © 2012 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.

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