T. B. Larimore (1843-1922), is quoted as saying, “When my hand is still, my tongue silent and my eyes closed; when friends come to look on my pale face, l want them to be able to say, at least, ‘He did the best he could.”’

Jesus told a parable in which one man failed to do the best he could (Matthew 25:14-30). Three men each with differing abilities were given talents. One received five talents, another two, and the last, one. Those who had received five and two talents increased their capital. Each was praised by his lord, “well done, thou good and faithful servant.” The one talent man was a different story. He failed to gain any more talents for his lord. When the lord returned he was rebuked, “Thou wicked and slothful servant.” He was cast into outer darkness. He had failed to give his best. The point of the parable should not be lost on any of us.

The prophet Malachi rebuked the people of his day for their failure to do the best they could. They failed to bring God the best in sacrifice, but were content to bring the lame and sick (Malachi 1:13). God deserved and desired better. We must be careful that we don’t become content in offering God less than our best.

Are we really doing the best we can? If we attend one service of the church during the week, is that the best we can do? ls our contribution to the work of the church the best we can do? ls our involvement in the local congregation, to the extent that it is, the best we can do? Are we living our life in such a way that it is the best we can do? Are our efforts to share the gospel with others the best we can do? ls our service in the kingdom the best we can do, or are we satisfied with half-way measures?

Even when we do our best it is important to remember these words of Jesus: “So likewise when you have done all those things which are commanded of you, say, we are unprofitable servants; we have done that which was our duty to do” (Luke 17:10). God gave the best of Heaven (John 3:16). What will we give Him in return? Think about it.

Randy Baker
via Camden Ave. church of Christ
Parkersburg, VA

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