A Word to the Talented

Our church recently hosted Voices of Mobile in concert.  Voices is a world-class vocal group with tight harmonies, and attractive stage presence.  Each student is profoundly talented.  I personally enjoyed the time I had to hang with them off stage.  So I was honored when Dr. Roger Breland asked that I speak during their pre-concert devotions.  Here’s what I shared and what I would share with any performer or group.

  1. Follow God boldly.  He wants to use your talents.  But know that things will not turn out entirely as you hope.  Some of your dreams may seem crushed.  You will struggle with the knowledge that God allowed the disappointment.  Be obedient, and He will direct you perfectly.  His directions seem painful at the time but are often diversions from disaster, and a path to greater blessing than you can imagine.  Embrace His leading.
  2. You will be pushed into leadership positions due to your gifts – and probably prematurely.  The truth is many aspects of your Christian character and spiritual maturity are not as developed as your artistic skills.  Because of this, the talented achieve high levels of leadership and run the risk of a major fall.  We all deal with sin.  And I don’t mean mistakes.  I am referring to willful disobedience and it could ruin you, your family, your career, and damage the Kingdom.  You must guard yourself against sin in 3 ways…
    1. The power of the Holy Spirit.
    2. Self-Control – the Spirit empowers but the Bible is clear that we must be proactive in exercising that power.
    3. Brutal accountability – you must have at least one person who has full access to your life (your girlfriend does not count.)  This is painful, but necessary.
  3. Your greatest contribution to the Kingdom will be your leadership.  Your gifts (which you had nothing to do with) simply provide opportunities.  They mean nothing unless you can inspire, encourage, and motivate others to do something.  This is true on Sunday mornings or in a concert.  Gifts are great.  Sing, play, practice, and work hard.  But your lasting legacy will be your ability to influence others to action.
The Holy Spirit has gifted you in unique ways – but be careful not to confuse that talent for true leadership and maturity.  The exceptionally talented need to take careful inventory of their lives and walk in humility so they can be used in great ways.