Wednesday of the Twenty-NinthWeek in Ordinary Time
The talents and the project
Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour when the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” Then Peter said, “Lord, is this parable meant for us or for everyone?” And the Lord replied, “Who, then, is the faithful and prudent steward whom the master will put in charge of his servants to distribute (the) food allowance at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master on arrival finds doing so. Truly, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property … That servant who knew his master’s will but did not make preparations nor act in accord with his will shall be beaten severely; Lk 12,39-47
When we meditate on the parable of the talents we are in front of part of the truth. The parable urges us to trade well the received gifts to the purpose of having them bearing fruits, but it does not tell us in which way, in what life project. Today, the Lord tells us the other side of the truth: “That servant who knew his master’s will but did not make preparations nor act accord with his will shall be beaten severely”. There is therefore a project which concerns us, there are fruits to bring and there will be a final judgment. The talents, however, which the Lord delivered, part in the birth and part at the baptism, and of which the parents are responsible for ensuring that the sons develop, are only a down payment of the entire dowry. To them the Lord adds all the others, which make up the main part, once a person begins to enter into his life project. Unfortunately not always, and not all of us, we become aware of the program which the Lord has prepared for us and we prefer to trade the few talents of the down payment in our small earthly projects, rather than to receive them all, together with his project of life. When we receive them, these are always some small seedlings which initially grow with the love of the parents and, subsequently, with the prayer, the frequenting of the sacraments and the commitment in developing our project. To realize up to where the gift of the talents which the Lord keeps aside for us can reach, just think to st. Paul and to those talents he has received, combined with the revelation of his project: “If, I suppose, you have heard of the stewardship of God grace that was given to me for your benefit, (namely that) the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly yesterday…. To me, the very last of all the holy ones, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the inscrutable riches of Christ” (Eph 3,2-8). Even for us elderly people, however, the Lord has kept aside other projects and other talents.