What we must do with our gifts

Ervin TanReflections

What we must do with our gifts

God is Love. His generosity can never be outdone. Archbishop William Goh refl ects about how we are called to share in His generosity, by freely giving to others the gifts He has blessed us with.

Awareness of God’s love

King David had a tremendous appreciation for everything the Lord had given him. He was aware that the Lord had seen him through many military and political battles, and acknowledged that the peace and stability that the newly united Israel was experiencing was made possible only because of the Lord’s grace and generosity. In gratitude, David was eager to build a house for the Lord.

However, God would never allow us to outdo Him in generosity. He commanded the prophet Nathan to tell David that He does not live in a house because He moves with His people.

On the contrary, God would build a house for David. He said, “When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your ancestors, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come forth from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.” (2 Samuel 7:12-13)

When King David heard this, the was filled with amazement at the love and mercy shown to him. In humility, he sat before the Lord and asked, “Who am I, Lord, and what is my house, that you have led me as far as this?”(2 Samuel 7:18)

Such was the greatness and generosity of God towards David and Israel. Not only did God cut off his enemies so that Israel could live undisturbed, but He also ensured their continued existence. The purpose of our gifts David is not the only one blessed by God. Are we conscious of His blessings for us too? Unless we learn
from David to be conscious of God’s blessings, we will remain resentful, envious and ungrateful.

Each one of us has been blessed by Him in different ways according to our needs. Each of the gifts we receive have their specifi c purposes, and are not just for ourselves. Gifts are given to us so that we can use them for the good of others.

If we just use our blessings and resources for ourselves, we might satisfy our needs, but our hearts will be empty and we will be deprived of the joy and love of God. Only when we share our gifts and blessings with others can we be filled with joy and be truly happy and fulfilled in life.

If we do not responsibly handle or make use of the gifts that the Lord has blessed us with, we would be liable for judgement and condemnation.

This is the warning. Jesus demands accountability for the blessings and graces we have received from God, “Would you bring in a lamp to put it under a tub or under the bed? Surely you will put it on the lampstand? For there is nothing hidden but it must be disclosed, nothing kept secret except to be brought to light.”
(Mark 4:21 22)

Whatever the Lord has given to us is meant for the community, society and the good of humanity. We must not keep God’s blessings and gifts given to us for our personal use and lavish living only, but we need to use them for the greater good of all, and exercise proper stewardship.

The failure to develop what we have been given will lead to the loss of the gifts. It is just like those who have the gift of writing, painting or music. If they do not continue to write, paint or sing or play music, they will lose them eventually. The best way to keep anything is to give them away. Similarly, the best way to keep our faith is to share it.

The reason we are weak in our faith is that we do not share our faith with others. We do not evangelise. As a consequence, we cannot remember the scripture texts. We do not speak about our beliefs. Unless we share, teach and explain to others our faith and beliefs, we will forget about what we believe.

So let us make ourselves a dwelling place of God, like David did. We need to allow the Lord to fi ll us with His love, wisdom and His presence. Like David, we too must see and hear clearly what the Lord asks of us: “If anyone has ears to hear, let him listen to this. Take notice of what you are hearing.” (Mark 4:24)

Only when we contemplate on His word and His love can we grow in true wisdom and in generosity in love.


Based on Archbishop William Goh’s daily scripture reflection on 30 January 2020.



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