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Summary: Parable of the ten minas. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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Reading: Luke chapter 19 verses 11-27.

• Most people find Mondays depressing.

• We talk about those “Monday morning blues”.

In fact, here’s a useless or scary piece of information:

• There is a higher chance of having a heart attack on Monday;

• Than on any other day of the week.

This will cheer you up tomorrow:

• Did you know every other kind of stress-related illness,

• And condition is increased on Mondays to?

• Your blood pressure is elevated on Mondays,

• Meaning that you have a higher risk of a stroke.

• Your stomach acidity will be higher,

• Which means that you face a higher risk of having an ulcer.

• You will be glad to know, also,

• That you are twice as likely to commit suicide on a Monday as on any other day.

• That Monday-morning feeling is no myth,

• But a medical fact.

It is true to say:

• That a great many of us find the very idea of work depressing.

• We probably fall into one of four categories.

(a). There are the high-flyers.

• They will spend tomorrow under pressure,

• The are expected to perform, they are in a workaholic culture.

Ill:

The man who said:

• That he had only ever met three people who were absolutely obsessed with work.

• Unfortunately they happened to be the other three men in his office!

(b). Low flyers.

• Their Monday-morning syndrome is caused by mundane, boring, undemanding jobs

• They too can display symptoms of depression and stress.

Ill:

• The British government,

• When it ruled Ireland during the potato blight.

• In order to sustain the morale of the people by providing employment,

• The British ordered the construction of unnecessary roads, roads that went nowhere.

• Some people are in jobs like that;

• They are pointless and seem to be going no-where.

(c). Middle flyers.

• Those that enjoy their work and love their jobs;

• But they too have a problem.

• Their problem at work is their workmates or;

• Maybe it’s those physical working conditions that generate anxiety.

• There’s no denying that social and environmental factors;

• Make a big difference to job satisfaction.

(d). Non-flyers.

• It is also true that no matter how good the job,

• How considerate your employer,

• How nice the people you work with,

• For a great many of us it is the very idea of work that is unpalatable.

• We do not want to do it.

• The thought of having to do it, gives us those Monday morning blues.

Quote:

• Jerome K. Jerome who writes in his book Three Men in a Boat:

• ‘I like work: it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours.’

Verse 13 is the key verse:

• It is Jesus’ answer to the dreaded Monday-morning feeling.

• ‘Put this money to work until I come back.’

• This, if you like, is the Bible’s work ethic.

• Notice, it is grounded not in mere moral duty, but in future hope.

• We are to put his “mina” to work until he comes back.

• The final phrase is desperately important.

The world is not out of control, it is going somewhere, and the king is returning:

• You and I have to make the most of the opportunities and the resources you have;

• We need to invest in his kingdom by working hard for him. That is Jesus’ message.

Ill:

• There is a story of three workmen on a building site.

• A TV interviewer walks around the sight asking them what they are doing.

• First he sees a carpenter and asks him what is he doing;

• The man replies, ‘Oh, I’m sawing some wood.’

• Second he sees a stonemason and asks him what is he doing;

• The man replies ‘Oh, I’m shaping some stone.’

• Then he sees a labourer mixing the cement and asks him what is he doing;

• He replied, ‘Sir, I’m building a cathedral.’

It makes all the difference to have a goal:

• To see your life in the bigger picture, to have an eternal perspective.

• To have hope, to realise that we do is our calling.

• According to this parable, if we are unhappy with our current situation,

• We have the freedom to change it.

• God lets us invest out “Mina” any way we want;

• As long as we realise we are we are doing it for God. We are on the kings business.

(1). Context of the story:

• Jesus had just met a tax collector who was a hard worker,

• But who was investing in the wrong things.

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