What will most determine how successful, satisfied, content, and happy you and I are at the end of the new year?
Jesus said, “Again, (the kingdom) will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey" (Matthew 25:14-15).
In other words, "You're in charge until I get back." So what does He expect? Does He expect us to be successful? To be productive? To perform? To get results? To produce a certain outcome?
Actually, none of that. At the end of the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:19-22, Jesus did not say, "'Well done, good and successful servant! You have been successful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
Instead, He said, "'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
God calls us to be faithful, not successful. It's not that God doesn't care about our success. He very much wants to bless us. But in God's economy, success (results, outcomes) is His part.
Our part? God calls us to be faithful, not to produce a particular outcome. He doesn't expect you to punch above your weight.
So here's a good reflection question to ask: "What does faithfulness look like for me in 2015?" Therein lies the secret of sharing in God's happiness. Anything else will only end in tears.
Until every church disciples every man...