ABILITY TO RECOGNIZE ABILITY
By Pastor Patrick Mazani
We read in Matthew 25:14-15 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey.”
The man planned the distribution of talents basing on the abilities of the servants. He knew what each person was able to do. Fair deal! In this story, we should not get upset for the unequal distribution done by the master in his own discretion. Is God unfair? Does God make mistakes? Sometimes we humans are good in evading the real issues. When we do not want to be implicated, we raise side issues or distractions and spend more time on that which does not implicate us. We like that. We mask our own problems by highlighting the problems of others. So, there is no reason why we should freak out on why this man was given 5, that one 2 and the other only one.
Our text says: “to each according to their own ability,” that is, each according to their own training. What is ability? It is the power to do something, the skill, expertise, talent, possession of the means or skill to do something. Ability is also the capacity, potential or possibility to do something. We can simply conclude that: ability is what you are capable of doing. Without over simplifying, ability is what you can do. Stevie Wonder declares that “we all have ability. The difference is how we use it.” So do not worry about things you cannot do. God, in His wisdom and grace, will not hold us accountable to that which we had no ability to do. This is good news!
Each person is able to do what they should do. Some are able to do more, others less. We are all able to do something or somethings. We are given talents according to our abilities. There is nobody without any ability! Geoffrey Gaberino draws the line that “the real contest is always between what you've done and what you're capable of doing. You measure yourself against yourself and nobody else.” Questions to bother myself: Am I doing what I should be doing? Am I accomplishing what God wants me to do? Red Auerbach throws a piece of advice: “Just do what you do best.”
To safe guard ourselves from complaining why some people can do so much while others can do so little, God put a law in place: “You shall not covet that which belongs to your neighbor” (Exodus 20:17). The issue is not whether this one has more abilities than me, no. God knows what He is doing. Use your ability. You will be fine. We must not to be bothered by the big things that others are accomplishing. People have different talents. The bottom line is whether or not you are accomplishing what you should in your own capacity. Zig Ziglar concludes by saying, “you are the only person on earth who can use your ability.”
God has given each one of us a talent or several talents. We all have something. Talents are about winning souls for the kingdom of God. We can all do it in small ways or large ways. What is important is that you and me do our part. When it comes to what God says we can do, blessed are those who take God by His word! His word is true, His promises are sure, what He says comes to pass! I agree with Paul that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). Napoleon Bonaparte once said, “ability is of little account without opportunity.” There are plenty of opportunities God brings our way for us to use our talents. Let us open our eyes to such. God has given each one of us abilities and our task is to prove Him right. We can easily recognize our abilities when we are doing something. Other people can notice that too! So, with all your doing, do what God wants you to do and God will surely acknowledge your effort.
Jesus, our Master, bids us “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).