Are you hiding your talents?

Are you hiding your talents?

While I don’t believe in fortunes, I do believe in God and that He can speak however He wants. (Remember the adorable movie, O God II about God (starring George Burns) appearing and speaking to a little girl, Tracy Richards (Louanne Sirota), in a Chinese restaurant? He wanted Tracy to help promote Him to the world with the slogan, “Think God.”)

Yesterday, when I ordered Chinese for lunch, this is  what my fortune cookie read: “Use your talents. That’s what they are intended for.”

what my fortune cookie read
what my fortune cookie read

Are you using your talents or hiding them, like the servant who buried his master’s in Matthew 25:14-30?  

Busy business woman in office - Foter.com
Busy business woman in office
Foter.com

You’re probably familiar with this story in the Bible. A man was going on a trip and gave his three servants some of his talents, each according to their ability: he gave one 5 talents, another two, and another one talent. The first two multiplied their talents to 10 and 4, but the third servant dug in the ground and hid his talent.

After a long time, the master came back and learned what had happened to his property. He commended the first and second servants who used their talents wisely, but rebuked and punished the third servant who buried his talents:

 Then the servant with the one bag of silver came and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate. I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.’
“But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate,why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’
“Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver.  To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. Now throw this useless servant into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’”

The servant hid his talents because of fear. Is fear holding you back from using yours? God doesn’t want you afraid. He will help you, if you step out in faith in obedience to Him. 

fear

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”~Deuteronomy 31:6

God has given you and me unique, special talents that He wants us to use for His glory and to help other people. For me, that is speaking and writing.

Beth Jones, International Speaker/Author
Beth Jones, speaking at Aglow in Olathe, KS

For you, it might be drawing art, singing, performing drama, leading people, having medical skills, playing an instrument, organizing, decorating, being good at crunching numbers, building a big business, or any number of things. Whatever your talent(s) is, don’t hide it. Shine your light for others to see.

 “God has given each of you some special abilities; be sure to use them to help each other, passing on to others God’s many kinds of blessings. Are you called to preach? Then preach as though God himself were speaking through you. Are you called to help others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies so that God will be glorified through Jesus Christ—to him be glory and power forever and ever.” ~ 1 Peter 4:10-11, TLB

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How To Write Your Book Fast: Making Your Writing Dreams Come True
Cover art: Copyright 2016 Beth Jones

Is your talent writing? Have you always wanted to write a book? Learn how to make your writing dreams come true. In my new book, How to write your book fast: Making your writing dreams come true, I share my tips and resources for how I’ve written 15 books, many of them Amazon Best Sellers. Find out more here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Speaking at Aglow August 26

I’m really excited because this week on Wednesday, August 26, I’ll be speaking at Aglow in Grandview, Missouri. If you’re in the local area, I’d love to see you there! The address is Grandview Assembly of God, 12400 Grandview Rd, Grandview, Missouri, 64030.

The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes Amazon Best Seller http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VN77IXQ/
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes
Amazon Best Seller
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VN77IXQ/

 

I’ll be speaking on my signature talk, The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes, which is also the title of my Amazon Best Seller eBook. It’s about walking in your own unique glass slippers–your unique purpose and calling, using the gifts, talents, and skills God has put inside of you for His glory.

Periscope Follow me @bethmjones
Periscope
Follow me @bethmjones

 

I’m also scoping this week about using your gifts. If you are a speaker, author, and/or entrepreneur, and you’re not on Periscope yet, I strongly encourage you to check it out. It is live video streaming.

Recently I joined Mark Shaw‘s #tagtribes community which has a Facebook group for support, training, and motivation for scopers. Mark is an amazing leader and I’m learning so much from him and the other scopers there.

I believe that Periscope is an incredible global platform that God is using right now for His glory and to share your heart’s message to encourage and help others. 

You can follow me on Periscope @bethmjones and on Twitter @bethmjones.

Beth Jones, International Speaker/Author
Beth Jones, International Speaker Amazon Best Seller Author

I hope to see you Wednesday at Aglow! Please say a prayer for me for God’s anointing, that His words would be in my mouth to share with that particular audience. 

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A gift from God

Our daughter Leah with her violin
Our daughter Leah with her violin

Yesterday our youngest daughter Leah and I spontaneously went to eat at the Mexican restaurant in town, one of my fave places, and when we were almost finished, I spotted my old friend Denise and her husband Clayton at the door. They were looking for a meeting room in town for their MLM business. She ran up to me and hugged me, loudly laughing in exclamation to see me. As we talked, they shared about their business and then we left.

As soon as I was home, Denise texted me an apology, saying she hoped that they hadn’t been “too much” sharing about the company, but they were just excited about the testimonies from people using the product. I texted her back no, but I was wondering if I had run across her for another reason: our daughter Leah.

Leah Jones' graduation -in her blue cap, gown, and tassel
Leah Jones’ graduation -in her blue cap, gown, and tassel

Leah graduated two years ago from our homeschool, but isn’t sure what she wants to do yet with our life, so she doesn’t have a job and isn’t enrolled in college. She’s been taking violin lessons for two years and is an incredible violinist, and is teaching herself how to play the mandolin, the guitar, and the keyboard. She’s also an amazing, completely self-taught artist.

Copyright 2014 Leah Jones
Copyright 2014 Leah Jones

Several years ago, Ray bought her a graphic art tablet for her computer. I believe the art she creates is inspired by God. It is simply beautiful. I knew Denise was an artist and had been to the art studio in her home when we used to be neighbors and Leah was a toddler. I told her about Leah’s art and asked if she’d be open to us coming over for Leah to see her paintings. This year Leah began experimenting, too, with watercolor paints.

Copyright 2014 Leah Jones
Copyright 2014 Leah Jones

Denise said yes, and then she suggested coming by in a few minutes since they were already here in town to look at Leah’s art (they don’t live here, but close by). She not only paints, but she was an art teacher several years at a Christian school, won a local painting contest, and was commissioned to do portrait paintings for pay by people.

Copyright 2014 Leah Jones
Copyright 2014 Leah Jones

When Denise and her husband Clayton looked at Leah’s art, they really encouraged her. Denise looked at Leah after going through her computer graphic art and her watercolors and said, “Leah, you have a GIFT FROM GOD.” She explained that not everyone was able to do this, and it was God-given.

Copyright 2011 Leah Jones
Copyright 2011 Leah Jones

When I told them that I thought Leah could easily sell her art on Etsy but didn’t want to and didn’t think it’d sell, she and Clayton both told Leah that she COULD do that and SHOULD try. They told her they believed it would sell and if she could make money at doing what she loves and is good at, why not? What a lesson for you and me today! God wants us to prosper!

a gift
a gift

Denise then began sharing with Leah about the parable of the talents –how interesting since that’s our study in the Creative Christian Women’s Network on Facebook this week! It’s also a passage I’ve shared many times with Leah before about her art and music. Denise told her that the master called the servant who hid his talent “wicked” and “lazy,” and that Leah doesn’t want to hide her talent. Clayton explained that while the “talent” in that passage was a means of money in those days, it still applied to our talents and skills.

In the parable in Matthew 25, the word “delivered” in the original Greek language is the word paradid?mi (Blue Letter Bible Strong’s G3860), which means:

  • To give into the hands of another;
  • To give into one’s power of use;
  • To deliver to one to keep, use, take care of, manage;
  • To commit to, to commend.

Just as the master gave his servants the talents, giving them into their hands to manage wisely, God has put gifts, talents, and skills inside of you to steward faithfully. God doesn’t want you hiding your gifts, just as He doesn’t want Leah hiding her amazing art or music gifts. He created Leah in my womb, wonderfully and fearfully, with those gifts innately and He created yours, too.

Leah with our family, Heather, Ray & me
Leah with our family, Heather, Ray & me

The question is: what will you do with them? Hide them or let your light for Christ shine, so He may be glorified in you and through you? Remember, it’s all about Him and for His glory. Don’t hide your gifts!

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