A Modern Parable of Gifts

Some gifts from God are like a young man and woman who were wandering, not knowing what to do with their lives, when they came upon a ranch among the hills with a sign near the entrance that read, “Your Gifts From God”.

They decided to ask the rancher about these gifts and turned down the road to the ranch.

They found the rancher sitting at a table with multiple packages.  They could see many nearby barn-like buildings and groups of people all busy with different types of work, carrying things and talking among themselves.

“Hello Sir”, the young man said. “We would like to know more about the gifts on your sign.”

“Greetings friend.  You must be looking for purpose and significance in your life.  I’m glad you found your way here.”  The rancher turned and called out, “I need a guide at the front table please.”

The closest group turned at his call, quickly selected which of them should come and a young woman came to the table.

“Thank you Rebecca.  This couple would like to know more about the gifts.  Could you give them a quick tour?”

“It would be my pleasure.”  She turned to the couple, smiled warmly and asked the couple to follow her.  As they walked towards the first barn, she told them, “All the people you will see are students learning how to use their gifts; except for the guides and instructors who will be wearing blue hats just like mine.”

As she walked them from room to room they saw groups working with one or more instructors.

The first group had many different types of metal. “These are learning to build tools; like saws, files, chisels and hammers, that can be used to build other things.”

The next group had many different types of wood. “These are learning to build beautiful furniture.”

The next group were in a large kitchen, working with grains, oils, sugar, spices, yeast, vegetables and meats. “This is one of my favorite areas.  These are learning to bake or cook wonderful foods.”

The next group looked similar but they were working with smaller quantities and it was not clear what they were doing.  “These students are learning to make medicines to help the sick.”stethoscope

In the next room, all the students had stethoscopes around their necks and several instructors teaching them to be medical doctors.

The sounds coming from the next room gave away its purpose before Rebecca could speak.  “This is our music class and the students are learning to both write songs or and play different instruments.  Some are gifted singers, so this room frequently has accidental audiences from other classes.”

calculatorIn the next room were desks and chairs with the students with notebooks and calculators, watching as their guide taught them from a large chalk board.  “These students are learning how to work with numbers so they can predict how to use natural laws of chemistry or physics to build complex inventions. Math is so difficult for some, but others are remarkably gifted at it.”

There were boat builders, care givers, electricians, photographers, musical instrument builders, and gardeners raising food.

lenesIn other rooms they saw people with pieces of glass making lens to help others see or see things extremely small or far away.

They saw groups outside working with animals, training some and tending to the health of others.

In one room, it was not clear what the instructor was teaching her group so Rebecca told them, “These students are learning to be teachers.  When they are ready, they will teach children and adults all kinds of things.

notebookRebecca looked at her watch and said, “I have a still life painting class to teach in a few minutes, but I can show you one more group on our way back to the rancher.  Here we are.”  This room also had desks, chairs and a chalk board and another teacher talking.  “This group is learning how to write well.  They learn to create stories, poetry, recorded history, school curriculum and news articles.  They learn how to speak to readers.”

She walked them back to the ranchers table and said good-bye.

“Well,” said the rancher.  “Did you see anything that appealed to you?

“Oh Sir,” the young woman answered.  “I saw so many things that I want to do.  I would like most of those gifts because I know so little.”

“Yes Sir,” the young man quickly said. “I was amazed at all the things your gifts could allow me to do and would have a hard time choosing.  How does it work?  Do we choose a gift from the table or do you?

The rancher gave them a confused look.  I’m sorry.  I should have explained what we do here.  We don’t give gifts as you seem to think.  Each of these packages contain various raw materials for exploring gifts you already have.  See this box contains flour, salt, yeast, oil and such for someone who is gifted with the passion for baking.  That larger box is full of different woods for those who want to learn to build fine furniture.  This one contains simple notebooks and pencils for any of the math or writing classes.

“You don’t need anyone to give you the actual gifts because you already have them.  God gave them to you when you were conceived.  Some have the gift of loving to work with wood, but no one is born with the skills to build a chair.  Here, we only help you develop skills around your gifts.   The fun is in discovering which gifts you have and which you can be passionate about.

“Your interests will normally suggest what gifts God gave you so;” he said, spreading his hands over the pile of packages, “which would you like to try?”

The young man and woman looked at each other and smiled as they realized how much fun this was going to be.

The woman turned back to the table and the rancher and asked meekly, “Sir, do you have any packages with stethoscopes? I would love to know how to be someone’s doctor. Healing people has been a dream of mine I never thought could become reality.”

The rancher smiled and lifted a flat package from the stack and handed it to her.  She beamed with joy as she found one inside, ready for use.  “I bet you even know which room to go join.”

“I do Sir.  Thank you so much.”

The rancher turned to the young man, “And what passion would you like to study?”

He answered, “Sir there are several, but I think I want to start with a notebook.”

The rancher smiled knowingly and gave him one.  The young man thanked him and joined the writing group. Before long he was writing things that many read, including this parable.

Therefore, look for those people who can help you develop and enjoy using your gifts. 

GW bio card 4

7 thoughts on “A Modern Parable of Gifts

  1. when I was around 13, my mother tasked me with baking a cake for a party. we didn’t have butter, and I reasoned since one could substitute shortening for butter, and rendered bacon fat looked a lot like shortening, it would be a clever substitute. later that night, chocolate cake was passed around, and rather than the accolades I’d expected., the women started looking at each other in confusion. there was clearly something amiss. a few comments later, I admitted that I’d used bacon fat. My mother was horrified, the forks were set down and the chuckling started, but one, a modest woman, with few social or economic blessing, kept eating and said the cake reminded her of when she was a girl. Her family was very poor and they used whatever they had.. fast forward to now and people are adding bacon to chocolate.. the point is, not everyone will see your gifts. It’s not their job. It’s your job to keep sharing it..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Okay, now I’m trying to imagine what bacon-tinted chocolate cake must have tasted like. This is a great story Tracy – I can see it and best of all, I can see your face as the truth got out. Great stuff!


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