What if your boss gathers everyone together and reads the new official company policy, "From everyone who has been given much, much will be required, and from the one who has been entrusted with much, even more will be asked."
Can you imagine the response? I would guess that the most common reaction would be, "Wait a minute, will I be paid more for doing more?" or "I was hired to do a specific job, and now you want to keep adding on work?" You'd think your boss was a slave driver, piling on more and more work for you to do. Taking advantage of you. Well, you're not going to put up with it, are you?
But guess what? That quote is directly from Jesus! That's right. Jesus said, "From everyone who has been given much, much will be required, and from the one who has been entrusted with much, even more will be asked." (Luke 12:48b NET)
That statement will stop you in your tracks. Or at least it should. It did for me. It's a heavy duty verse. It requires a different perspective - a spiritual perspective. It involves a desire to please God, as opposed to a worldly, selfish "what's in it for me" attitude.
God has given each of us an ability to do something. It may be a gift of hospitality, or encouragement, or compassion toward others, or of public speaking or writing. It may be a talent of music, or art. Whatever it is, God has equipped each of us in unique ways. And whatever gifts He has given us, He wants us to be responsible managers (stewards) of those gifts in order to serve others and advance the Kingdom. He wants us to live to glorify Him, and exalt Christ and His church.
"Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms." (1 Peter 4:10)
And the more one has have been blessed, the more God expects from that person. And the more that person is a faithful steward of God's grace, the more God sees that person as a reliable and effective servant who will do much for the Kingdom. That's precisely the type of person God is looking for.
But why does the above quote from Jesus not offend us who are Christ followers? Why do we look at that statement differently? Why do the same words from a worldly perspective seem to have a polar opposite reaction than those same words if spoken by Jesus to His followers?
The answer is LOVE. Christ's love compels us - to live for Him, to serve Him, and to worship Him. It's the least we can do once we begin to grasp the extent of Christ's love - coming to this world to die for our sins. The statement by Jesus is not a drudgery, rather a privilege. As followers and disciples, we want to know Him more intimately, grow closer to Him, and please Him in every way.
Paul, in His letter to the Colossian church, pleads with them (and us), "We are asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding, so that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God." (Colossians 1:9-10)
Yes, when love is the motivator, perspectives change drastically. Instead of a selfish attitude, it's a selfless attitude. Instead of the least we can do to get by, it's the most we can do to serve others. Instead of an oppressed slave, we become a willing and ready servant.
"From everyone who has been given much, much will be required, and from the one who has been entrusted with much, even more will be asked."
Welcome the opportunity.