Not taking chances is dangerous. Being cautious is deadly. Playing it safe is not safe. The third slave expects the boss to transfer him out of the finance department for his lack of ingenuity, but he discovers himself in the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth (v. 30), which is harsher than anything he imagined.
Church people are known for playing it safe. We hang on to what we have. We do what we are used to doing. We spend too much time tied up in small concerns. We are timid about important matters. Fear keeps us from taking on real challenges.
We find it easy to go to church, learn about God, and become proficient at talking about faith, but the third slave’s experience suggests that what we do not do is more important than the opinions we hold. The slave thought he could explain away his indolence, but it does not work. And neither does the slave. Not in the finance department anyway.
We are tempted to say that we care about the poor, but we fail to share what we have. We talk about the importance of racial justice while assuming that we deserve the privileges that come our way. Most of us applaud our own good sense and ignore what we have failed to do.
We can take more chances. We can ask: How can we share our gifts? How can we live more like Jesus? What can we do to care for the least of God’s children? Why can’t we give away more of what we have? What can we stop doing so that we will have more time for others? Why can’t our commitment to Christ change how we live in major ways and not just minor ones?
What chances might God want you to take?
God, give me a vision of ways I could live more courageously. Amen.