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COMMENTARY

It's a wonderful world, isn't it?

Posted on February 22, 2021

Local newsColumns

Donna Crowe

Donna Crowe

The rover Perseverance recently landed on Mars. One of its jobs is to send back pictures. 

Have you checked out any of those Martian photos taken by past landers? If so, then you know that Mars is made up of rocks, craters, canyons and mountains covered by red iron oxide. As I consider that planet, I appreciate even more the planet we live on.

Each year, I order a wall calendar with pictures showing the beauty of our planet. This year portrays the following: for January, a mother polar bear and two cubs relaxing in the snow; for February, Monument Valley in Utah; for March, an outdoor wilderness with trees in water and trees on land; for April, bluebirds sitting on the tree branch, which blossoms with pink flowers; for May, a river with green plants standing in it on one side and a forest on the other; for June, purple and pink Lupine flowers in Vermont; for July, a candy-colored sunset over the shore of Lake Tahoe in Nevada; for August, gold, orange and purple wildflowers in the Albion Basin; for September, an autumn view of little waterfalls in a rushing creek in Colorado; in October, autumn foliage on the edge of a lake in New Hampshire; in November, a sunset over the rocks and scrub brush of Utah; and in December, a wonderland of snow on the trees and on the tops of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. 

Each year, the pictures are different, and they often don’t even include the amazing scenery in other parts of the world. 

Isaiah 6:3 tells us, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Hosts: The whole world is full of His glory.” 

The psalmist David proclaims, “When I consider Your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars…what is man that You are mindful of him?”

The heavens can be seen from Mars, too. God made it as well. But let’s be even more thankful for Earth and take care of our wonderful world.

Are we using our talents? 

The Bible talks a lot about talents. For example, Matthew 25:14-15 presents what has been called the “parable of the talents.” In this account, a man gives one servant five talents, another two and another one — to each according to his own ability. Then, the man heads off to another country.

When the man returns, he asks each man what he has done with his talents. Two of the men had gained more talents. Their boss was very pleased and told them they would be rewarded. But the third man had buried his talent. His boss was angry with him, so he took away his one talent and sent him into eternal punishment.

Clarence L. Haynes Jr., in an internet article, says the parable is not really talking about literal money, but rather about “stewardship, responsibility and preparedness.” Jesus has returned to heaven, and one day, He will return and ask us to give an accounting of what we have done in His absence. 

Haynes rightly says that all of us are called to ministry, so we shouldn’t expect the people who are called to pastoral ministry to do all the work while we just sit back as sponges. Instead, we need to seek out what God calls us to do and do it. 

Our ministry might be in part our job as schoolteachers, heading up a business or whatever secular work we do to make money. It’s not just about what we do inside the church. We can “shine light and share the truth of the gospel” in some way, whatever our work might be.

I’ll add that we can also be good and kind to people, serving them with Christian love and patience. That way, people can see God’s love in us.

God also gives us inborn skills and abilities that we can call “talents.” They can be skills in writing, drawing, speaking and on and on. They can be used in doing God’s work as well.

So, are we using our talents?

Donna Crowe is a minister’s wife. Her devotional column wasn’t printed last week due to space limitations, so that installment appears beneath this week’s column. "Are we using our talents?" was previously published online

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