While people were listening to Jesus speak,
he proceeded to tell a parable because he was near Jerusalem
and they thought that the Kingdom of God
would appear there immediately.
So he said,
"A nobleman went off to a distant country
to obtain the kingship for himself and then to return.
He called ten of his servants and gave them ten gold coins
and told them, 'Engage in trade with these until I return.'
His fellow citizens, however, despised him
and sent a delegation after him to announce,
'We do not want this man to be our king.'
But when he returned after obtaining the kingship,
he had the servants called, to whom he had given the money,
to learn what they had gained by trading.
The first came forward and said,
'Sir, your gold coin has earned ten additional ones.'
He replied, 'Well done, good servant!
You have been faithful in this very small matter;
take charge of ten cities.'
Then the second came and reported,
'Your gold coin, sir, has earned five more.'
And to this servant too he said,
'You, take charge of five cities.'
Then the other servant came and said,
'Sir, here is your gold coin;
I kept it stored away in a handkerchief,
for I was afraid of you, because you are a demanding man;
you take up what you did not lay down
and you harvest what you did not plant.'
He said to him,
'With your own words I shall condemn you,
you wicked servant.
You knew I was a demanding man,
taking up what I did not lay down
and harvesting what I did not plant;
why did you not put my money in a bank?
Then on my return I would have collected it with interest.'
And to those standing by he said,
'Take the gold coin from him
and give it to the servant who has ten.'
But they said to him,
'Sir, he has ten gold coins.'
He replied, 'I tell you,
to everyone who has, more will be given,
but from the one who has not,
even what he has will be taken away.
Now as for those enemies of mine who did not want me as their king,
bring them here and slay them before me.'"
After he had said this,
he proceeded on his journey up to Jerusalem.
The main theme that comes to my mind when I read this Gospel passage is faith, and the Spiritual growth that comes from this faith. My Faith in God, and my perception of Him and all that He has given me allows for growth. Growth in Charity, helping others by giving of myself and investing in others by sharing my gifts.
The nobleman gave ten of his servants each a gold coin. However, only three of them are mentioned having done anything with their coins at all. The first servant had an abundance of faith and was able to take a chance and leap into the investing that was necessary to allow his one gold coin to grow into ten gold coins. The second invested and took a leap of faith that allowed his one gold coin to grow into five gold coins. The third servant lacked faith. It seems he was selfish and didn’t share the gold coin therefore, he was not able to allow it to grow.
How does this have anything to do with how God wants me to grow? Well, I think God gives me opportunities to show His love to others everyday. God has already shown me and all of us how to be self giving through His Son Jesus. (John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.) So does this mean God is a loving God or a God who is waiting to condemn? God is a loving God and wants me to share my gifts with others
and to be self giving. By giving and being a blessing to others, I can in turn be able to receive the blessings and graces from God that will help me grow.
This is not always easy though. There are many things that can get in the way of my growth, especially fear (just like the third servant). Fear of what people will think of the choices that I make, fear of being ridiculed, or even a fear of making the wrong choices. Every day, there is an opportunity to make that choice to grow or to remain selfish and stagnant, not taking the leap of faith necessary for me to make room in my heart and soul for Jesus.
Let us pray for each other to have the courage, generosity and love we need to overcome our sinful tendencies and be able to grow in faith.
May God bless us all!