Nancy Taylor Tate
“Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful…” Psalm 101:6
In the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30 there are two types of servants. The one pleased the Lord, and received a reward. The other did not! We want to be the type that pleases the Lord!
Regarding the servants that pleased the Lord, one servant had five talents, the other two. Though the number of talents each varied, the reward they received was identical. To both the Lord said the same:
“Well done, you good and faithful servant: you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things: enter you into the joy of your lord.” Matthew 25:21
Reward is not based on how much I have, but rather in being faithful with that which I have been entrusted with. The Lord was displeased with the servant with one talent, not because he only had one, but because he was not faithful in using wisely the one that he had been given.
It does not matter if I have five talents, two, or one. What is important is that I am faithful with that which the Lord has entrusted to me, in the place where I am at.
The word “faithful” is found at least eighty-two times in the Bible. The dictionary defines faithful as maintaining allegiance to someone, or to something, of being a constant, loyal, friend. Faithfulness also speaks of showing, or having a strong sense of responsibility, of being conscientious, reliable, and full of faith.
1 Corinthians 4:2 says, “Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.” The word “required” is a very strong word. To require means to demand, as being necessary, or crucial. Of a steward, or servant, it is necessary, crucial, that he be found faithful.
Why is faithfulness so important? Luke 16:10 tells us that “He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.” The New Living Bible states it like this: “Unless you are faithful in small matters, you would not be faithful in large ones. If you cheat even a little, you would not be honest with greater responsibilities.”
Revelation 2:10 speaks of those who are “faithful to death” as receiving a “crown of life.”
Paul was able to say to Timothy, “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has enabled me, for that He counted me faithful…” (I Timothy 1:12). Paul goes on to speak of that which he was doing now, in contrast to that which he did prior to his conversion. What he was doing at the present time was marked by faithfulness. From that position he was able to encourage Timothy also to be faithful.
My heart attitude is the key to my being faithful in whatever the Lord has called me to do. I am to do it out of a desire to please the Lord, and be found faithful in His sight. I Corinthians 10:31 tells me that, “Whether therefore you eat, or drink, or whatsoever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
We all have different responsibilities. I may be called to cook, or teach. Or I may be called to do construction work, or work in an office. Perhaps I am a pastor, or a missionary, or maybe I have a ministry of helps. The reward is not for what I do. Rather, it is for my faithfulness in doing what I do. What matters is that I am faithful in that which the Lord has entrusted me with.
In my own life, at times I have held multiple positions all at the same time. I remember one time when I was the pastor. In another, I was the song leader. In another, I set up and cleaned up. In another, I was simply a guest, with no other particular identity at all.
In each position I was just as happy, because I understood the reward was not for what I was doing, but my faithfulness in whatever it was that I was doing, even if it meant just being a good guest! My contentment came from a deep inner desire simply to please the Lord and be found faithful in His eyes.
This simple understanding has changed my life. My purpose is no longer what I am doing. My purpose is to please the Lord, in whatever it is I am called to do. From my time with Him, I find myself doing things, but they are a by-product of time spent with Him.
As the Lord continues to work in my life through circumstances and responsibilities that He has allowed, a working of the Holy Spirit continues in my life, purifying my love for Him, increasing my desire to please Him. This love continues to grow, displacing all other desires. As a by-product, faithfulness is borne in my life.
I hear people at times say, if I could do this, or if I could do that, if I could be here, or go there, or have this, or have that, then I would be happy. That is not where true happiness lies. Happiness is in pleasing the Lord, where He has called you, doing what He has called you to do.
True happiness comes from that sense of being in right alignment with the Lord. True happiness comes simply from being faithful wherever, whatever.
Our lives all differ, yet we all have the same calling, to be with Him, that we might be or become a witness, first and foremost unto Him. When we understand that, and are faithful to the calling, we are able to enter into the joy of the Lord.
God’s word says, “Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful….” Psalm 101:6
Our part is simply to be faithful. He will do the rest.