Today I heard a sermon in church that had me thinking how the phrase above may apply to writers. We have all heard it in connection

Physical Fitness Test

Physical Fitness Test (Photo credit: The U.S. Army)

with physical fitness, but this sermon had to do with the parable of the talents. In case you’ve never heard it before, here’s what it is in a nutshell. Three servants were given 5 talents, 2 talents and 1 talent respectively. In the parable, the talents referred to money. The first two men worked their talents and doubled them, but the third man hid his in the ground. When their master returned, he rewarded the first two men for their accomplishments, but he rebuked the third man strongly. Not only that, he ordered that the one talent be taken from him and given to the one who had the most.

Use it or lose it! As I listened to the sermon, I wondered why the third man had done nothing with his talent. Was he lazy? Afraid? Indifferent? Whatever the reason, we as writers cannot afford to be like him. Many times I hear would-be writers say, “I can’t just bring myself to sit down and write.” Or, “I started, but I stopped.” Or some other excuse. If  writing is something you want to do, do it.  Don’t bury your talent in the ground.

Well, you say, I don’t know if I have the talent. You may not have the talent, but if you have been thinking about writing, then you have the desire. And writing is a craft that can be learned.  Going back to the story above, I believe the master gave them talents according to their ability. The third man was not expected to produce as much as the first one did, but he could have produced something. You may not be able to sit down and write a 400-page novel right now, but you can begin by writing a blog post, an article, a poem, a short story. Whatever your level of ability, use it or lose it.

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