REPOST Today’s AMI QT Devotional, provided by Pastor Ryun Chang (AMI Teaching Pastor), was first posted on October 7, 2014.
Devotional Thought for This Morning
“Making Good on God’s Investment”
Luke 12:48b (NIV)
“From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.”
The place where the AMI Institute 2012 was held, Wilshire Boulevard close to Korean town in Los Angeles, was familiar to me since I lived there in the 1980s. Jogging around the streets early in the morning, I saw another familiar sight: Hispanic men waiting for someone to give them work. Some 30 years ago, I could have justified ignoring them since I couldn’t communicate in Spanish; but now, after living in Mexico for a decade, language isn’t a problem. So, I should get involved but do I want to, on the street, no less?
In the parable of the talents, the master, before leaving on a journey, apportions different amount of money to his servants. Upon returning, he is pleased that those who had received five and two talents, respectively, put them to work and multiplied them by two-fold. But the servant with one talent hid it in the ground, choosing to do nothing. Not too pleased, the master orders that the lone talent be taken away and given to the one who now has ten talents, saying, “Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him” (Matt. 25:29).
Evidently, God doesn’t want his investment wasted, although many do just that. The master minces no words when calling the irresponsible servant “wicked” and “lazy.” Lazy, yes, but wicked? You may say that too if you are called “a hard man,” as did this servant, whose gains came from exploiting people (v.24). The passive-aggressiveness of this servant, miffed at having received less than others, likely was his way of getting back at his boss; meanwhile, he refused to see that a talent was still worth more than a thousand dollars.
So the next two mornings, armed with fresh coffee and donuts, I went to minister to the men with God’s word and prayer. It was a good return for God’s investment in enabling me to speak Spanish and to have a few bucks in my wallet. Today, look around to see whether God’s investment in you can bring some hope and smile to those caught in a difficult moment.
Prayer: Glorious Father, how awesome it is to encounter You every day, and to have access to You at any moment and any place. Thank You for everything that you have given me, but forgive me for often assuming that they are all for me. Remind me every day that I MUST use your investment in my life to expand your kingdom. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Nehemiah 9
Lunch Break Study
Read 1 Timothy 6:17-9 (NIV): Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.
Eccle. 5:19:Moreover, when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the ability to enjoy them, to accept their lot and be happy in their toil—this is a gift of God
Questions to Consider
- What are the two things that God wants us to do with the riches that have been given to us?
- What should motivate us to share what God has given us?
- What are some talents that you feel God has given you? Honestly appraise how you are using them.
- First, it is for us to enjoy, but we shouldn’t take this for granted: God must give us the ability to enjoy in order to really take pleasure in our riches. Second, it is using them to do good works and share with those in need. I think the ability to enjoy our wealth is tied to whether it is making a difference in the lives of others.
- The ultimate motivation is the hope of heaven; and our reward is based on how we have lived on earth, which includes having used our wealth to do good works.
- The basic things that everyone has are time and money. Also, everyone is slightly better than others in something: that can be considered talent. It can be used to help those who aren’t as good as you are in that area.
When you see someone who has so much more than you, how do you feel? Don’t fixate on how little you have; instead, focus on what you do have and use it to do positive things. Ask God for strength.