Burying Your Gifts at Home

Are you a SAHM?  Are you wasting your abilities?

I recently heard a speaker on a very popular Christian radio program talking about her career/ministry hybrid.  She stated in passing that she would be burying her gifts if she stayed home.

Are your gifts being buried at home? Can I ask the question only slightly differently?

 Are your God-given gifts being wasted if you don’t have a career or a ministry outside your home?

What are you saying when you say that you have talents and gifts which would be wasted at home? Aren’t you saying:

    To be a wife and mother requires only a basic skill set which nearly every woman has. It’s the default.

     But you have some extra skills or talents which equip you to do something more than being a homemaker, wife and mother.

     That you have special talents that the world needs, and that those talents are not needed at home.

     Or that the world’s need of those talents supersede your family’s need for those talents.

     Or that you choose to cultivate your gifts in the working or ministry world rather than in your ministry at home.

Is what I just wrote unfair?

If you are a stay-at-home-mom, are you burying the abilities God gave you–hiding them–rendering them useless and unproductive? Do you think you are burying your gifts in the same way that the faithless servant buried his talent in the ground?  Let’s look at Matthew 25: 14-30.

Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them.  To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability.  Then he went on his journey.  The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more.  So also, the one with the two talents gained two more.  But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.

After a long time, the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them.  The man who had received the five talents brought the other five.  “Master,” he said, “you entrusted me with five talents.  See, I have gained five more.”

His master replied, “Well done, good and faithful servant!  You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.  Come and share your master’s happiness!”

The man with the two talents also came.  “Master,” he said, “you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.”

His master replied, “Well done, good and faithful servant!  You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.  Come and share your master’s happiness!”

Then the man who had received the one talent came.  “Master,” he said, “I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed.  So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground.  See, here is what belongs to you.”

His master replied, “You wicked, lazy servant!  So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed?  Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.

“Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents.  For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance.  Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.  And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

The lord came back to his estate and severely punished that servant (referred to as wicked) because he had wasted the talent given him.  He was expected to invest the talent and to receive a multiplied return for his master. Instead he had lazily and fearfully hidden the gift and simply gave it back when the master returned. He had not produced any fruit.

No, you are not the wicked servant.

The talent “buried” in your home and in your family’s lives is not the one the wicked servant  buried. It is the talent faithfully invested which produced tenfold. 

The good servant was commended for faithfully and obediently stewarding that talent so that the return could be given back to the Master.

For it always belonged to the Master.  The talent was never the servants’ to hoard, or to hide, or to keep, or to waste. It came from the Master and to the Master it would return.

     Do you really not see that using your gifts at home, in faithfully loving your husband, in raising your children, in discipling the children, in tending your own estate…is investing, and not burying?

You have been given special and unique talents which were designed to apply uniquely to your home and your family.

You will have the privilege of returning the produce of the gifts the Master has given you, invested and persevered in, many-fold. And perhaps your faithfulness will be commended too. “For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance.  Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.”

The rewards for investing where the Master has directed are rich indeed.  What you invest there will reproduce geometrically far into the future, generation after generation.

Do we have options?  Are we perfectly free to choose whether we will invest in our motherhood/family/marriage…or our profession?

And is there some sort of “balance” we can achieve where we are making the best of both options?

Is being a parent only one of our options?

Here’s what I think.

When you welcome a child into your family, you have a built-in career, profession and calling. This career is instant and permanent.  It’s Job #1.  Any other claim upon your time, energy, and engagement is a distant second.

You are the resource, the material God used to make the one and only mother for your children.  No one else is able to do that job.

And you will answer to The Master for how you invested the talents He gave you; you will be accountable for the return you produced for Him.

If you are a mom who is contemplating going to work, here are some questions.

Do you think that those unique human beings you are stewarding can be maintained and cared for by someone else with no special qualifications…that their basic needs being met is adequate?

Or do you believe that they do need special engagement with a special someone?

And are you content to let someone else pour herself into their lives; to be the one, spending approximately 40 to 50 hours a week substituting for you?

Are you OK with sharing the memories, the character-building, the values-teaching? That someone else will, part time, model for your children the primary relationship which will be the model for all other relationships.

No one is doing that with my children but me. In fact, no one else can do that job for me.

Are you brave enough to be “just” a stay-at-home-mom?  Are you able to be comfortable with being identified as a mom, and not as a (insert career choice here) who is staying home with your kids…for now?

While all those around you are teachers and moms, and RN’s and moms, and sales reps and moms, and PhD’s and moms, are you brave enough, confident enough, to be “just” a mom?

And if you are very young, are you brave enough to become a mom with no career behind you- with no other identity but wife and mother?

It will require bravery and conviction.  Because the world all around you will be communicating that what you are doing is not really enough, but that your choice is alright for you because that’s all you can do.

What you are being asked to do is to give up being validated by the world, and even by those in your own community who you respect.

But we need to be people who are content to joyfully give the Master what is His, after we have spent ourselves in cultivating and multiplying what He gave us.

I want my gifts buried in my family.

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3 thoughts on “Burying Your Gifts at Home

  1. insanitybytes22

    So well said! There is a huge ministry to be found in staying home, caring for children, husbands, but there is also family, friends, the community, a million needs to be addressed and looked after. Than there is our own relationship with Christ, our own selves to grow and develop. It’s a huge task and so sad to see it so disparaged and cast aside. It’s such a vital ministry to be a wife and mother that volumes have been written pointing out how the collapse of marriage is what led to the decline of ancient Rome and Greece. So while investing those treasures in heaven and in our families, we’re also helping to prevent the decline of civilization. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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