When we start a new job, we want to be useful. We want to use our talents for the benefit of our employer. And this is great! But that attitude should be found in all areas of our life.
We live in a world that doesn’t value much the spirit of sacrifice. We try to get the most out of any deal. We evaluate what one particular action will bring us before we get involved. We often even act the same in our friendships as we remain friends with those who bring us something, and, sadly, even in our romantic relationships. How many singles are looking for a partner who will meet their needs? Instead of looking for a partner who they will serve and care for their entire life. How many married couples have divorced because they felt they were giving more than they received in their marriage?
Yet taking the position of a servant has always been Christ’s teaching. Loving our neighbor is a command of Jesus, and He asks us to be generous with our time and our efforts without seeking a return (Luke 14:12-14). Without posting our good works on social media (Matthew 6:1)!
Just as we are ready to learn and put our talents to use, when we start a new job, we should also have this generous attitude wherever we go. That is what Joseph’s family did when he arrived in Egypt. His brothers could have lived a royal life, in the palace, alongside Joseph, but no, they immediately offered their talents to Pharaoh (Genesis 47:3-6). Offering their talent and service, to the Pharaoh was a mark of thankfulness.
The best way to show our thankfulness is to offer our talents. Everywhere we go, we should take this attitude. And we’re not talking here about giving your whole life to every place you set foot! It can be as easy as putting your basket back to the right place when you go grocery shopping. It is giving up your seat on public transport or to donate an evening periodically to help your children’s school. It is also using your talents to enhance a Singles activity or to serve faithfully in your local church in a position that matches your talents. The first time we show up there, we are visitors. But the second time, we must do like Joseph’s brothers and offer our talents, our service.
By making this good habit of being useful where we are, we are also preparing ourselves for future married life. As soon as we start looking for a partner, if we are already used to giving more than receiving in our relationships, our criteria will be different and, we will also be much more attractive. So let’s get into the habit of being useful where we are right now. That is not only what God wants for us. It is also good practice towards a happy marriage.