Songwriter Harry Chapin spun a tale of a man named Mr. Tanner, a dry cleaner who loved his work. He was content with his work and loved his customers. Tanner was also a baritone who loved singing. Chapin said of Tanner, “He did not know how well he sang, it just made him whole.” Tanner’s friends convinced him he should give up dry cleaning and pursue fame and glory. Yet, it was not to be; his debut showed his talent was not up to snuff. Dejected, Tanner gave up singing and his life was not the same.
God blesses his people with many gifts and talents. Using these, we glorify God by serving our neighbor. Used for God’s purposes, our gifts and talents meet the needs of those around us and create community. Of course, there is always the temptation to seek glory, fame, and fortune for ourselves, especially when swayed by others.
Just as Jesus teaches there are people of the world who would lead us astray, so too Paul teaches us that we are to be content with all God provides. Worldly influences may tempt us to seek glory for ourselves, but loving God and using our gifts brings joy and makes us whole.
Prayer: Holy God, make us content with all you have provided, that it may be our joy to serve others. Amen.