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Using our Time, Talents and Treasures to God’s Glory

Holy Scripture

Eph. 5:8-19, Matt. 25:14-30, Mark 12:41-44

Reading from the Fathers

“The time is not yours. At present you are strangers, and sojourners, and foreigners, and aliens; do not seek honors, do not seek glory, do not seek authority, nor revenge; bear all things, and in this way, ‘redeem the time’. Give up many things, anything they may require... only preserve the principal thing, I mean the Faith... Are we to give thanks for everything that befalls us? Yes, be it even disease, be it even penury (destitution). For if a certain wise man gave this advice in the Old Testament and said, ‘Whatsoever is brought upon you take it cheerfully, and be patient when you are changed to a low estate’ (Ecclus. 2:4); much more ought this to be the case in the New... Let us therefore give thanks not only for blessings which we see, but also for those which we do not see, and for those which we receive against our will.” —St. John Chrysostom (4th century)

“The reading of the Gospel, dearly beloved, would have us consider that those of us who receive more gifts than others in this world will be judged more strictly by its Creator. For according as the gifts increase, the amount demanded will be more exacting; therefore a man should be more humble and use his gift more diligently in God’s service...” —St. Gregory the Great (6th century)


When we speak of faithfully using our talents, we must address how we use our time, God-given talents and gifts, and our finances. The question of how we use these resources, given to us as they are by our loving Creator, is a question not for the rich but for all of us as demonstrated by the story of the widow’s mite.

Time: We are called to use our time faithfully and in the service of others. While we must certainly do the things necessary for our own well-being and keep ourselves from being a burden to others as much as we are able, we should also at all times consider the needs of others along with those of ourselves.

  • Redeeming the time also means that we are constantly striving in all things we undertake to glorify God. This is what repentance means, metanoia, as we have learned is a continuous effort on our part to cooperate with God’s will and change our hearts to conform to His will.
  • We want to strive to see prayer and worship not as “study breaks” or “breaks from reality” but rather as Reality itself because we are, at those times, communing with Him who is Life itself, the Author of all things, both visible and invisible, i.e., Reality.
  • We live for this communion; this is what true Life is and so it is for this reason that we must prioritize our lives around the Church and not the other way around.

Talents: How we use our God-given gifts is another question we are challenged to analyze in our lives. We are answerable to God for how we make use of the resources and abilities He has entrusted to us.

  • For this reason, service to others as you are able, whether you are the janitor or the bishop, we are all answerable for the gifts and talents we have to use them for the building up of the Church into “the full stature of Christ.”
  • As you realize certain aptitudes, strive to begin to seek out ways to use these gifts for God’s glory.

Treasures: Christ’s teaching of the story of the widow’s mite, teaches us that our giving to the upbuilding of the Church is not restricted to the wealthy—by whatever arbitrary standard we measure wealth.

  • We give back to God of our treasure and resources as an act of recognition and thanksgiving for God’s ineffable provision to us.
  • Whatever provision we have for ourselves—even if we think we’ve worked very hard for it—is ultimately by God’s provision and bounty.
  • We want to lay up for ourselves “treasure in heaven” and avoid earthly extravagance.
  • Christ says, “To whom much has been given, much will be demanded.”
  • The standard for giving is the TITHE, ten percent of our income, but if you are not earning a regular income or are not yet ready to entrust a tithe to the Lord, then consider giving whatever you can—even $5 or $10 a month back to God and His work. This would be a faithful start.

Summing it all up

Giving to God of your Time, Talents, and Treasures requires TRUST and faithfulness, as well as discipline.

Giving back to God is also part of repentance, ‘metanoia’ in that it requires an attitude of trust and openness to using all of our resources— tiime, talent, treasure for God’s glory.


  1. Make an inventory of the way you currently see your time, talents, and treasures. Is there anything you need to repent of?
  2. Ask yourself how you can better use these resources that God has given you for His glory.
  3. Consder beginning to make some kind of contribution to this ministry, or a local Orthodox church, or other ministry of the Church.