Hope and fear are very much at the heart of the Gospel parable this Sunday. It’s the story of a wealthy master who entrusts vast amounts of his property to three servants and goes away, leaving them to it. It’s an extraordinary act of faith and trust in the hope that the servants will increase the value of his property.
When the master returns, the first two servants who have managed to double his property are praised and invited to join his household – not servants anymore. The third servant, paralysed by fear, didn’t do anything with the master’s property and gets condemned and cast outside.
Many of us grew up fearing God. It seemed as if God was testing, almost torturing us, with temptation; as if God was just waiting for us to make a mistake before pouncing on us. But this Gospel story reminds us of just how much faith, hope and love God actually has in and for us.
Like the master, God has put into our hands the extremely precious gift of his own life. Just as God put his life into human hands in the person of Jesus, God has never stopped putting himself into our hands, hoping that we would seize the Gift, work with it wisely, productively and industriously to produce even more faith, hope and love by our good thoughts, words and actions.
If we can let go of fear and trust in God’s love for us we can become the people God has always hoped we would become.
Unlike the master in the parable, God understands our fears and knows the ‘demons’ which often get in the way of our good intentions.
Today’s Gospel calls us to take a small step forward in trusting God’s love for us, a small step out of fear and into life.
Jesus spoke this parable to his disciples: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a man on his way abroad who summoned his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to a third, one; each in proportion to his ability. Then he set out. The man who had received five talents promptly went and traded with them and made five more. The man who had received two made two more in the same way. But the man who had received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. Now a long time after, the master of those servants came back and went through his accounts with them. The man who had received the five talents came forward bringing five more. ‘Sir,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents; here are five more that I have made.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have shown that you can be faithful in small things, I will trust you with the greater; come and join in your master’s happiness.’ (Matthew 25:14-30 - short form)
Read the Gospel reflection for this Sunday.
Join us in celebrating at home this Sunday using the resources below.