(A short talk at the Homeschoolers Got Talent program of the Lighthouse Homeschool Network in November 2012)
Dear parents, friends, boys and girls,
This is the second year of our Homeschoolers Got Talent. It was a wonderful event last year and I’m looking forward to have another God-glorifying presentation from our children today. Yes, that’s what we want to witness and experience once again this afternoon – a God-glorifying presentation of talents and abilities from our children.
Boys and girls, whether your talent is in the area of music, the art, writing or speech, you have to recognize that your talent is from God. Talent, skills, and abilities are God-given that need to be discovered, developed and used not for personal selfish ambition but, as Dr. Philip Graham Ryken said, “… for the service of others and the glory of God.” Or to put in another way, the presentation of our God-given talents “is an expression of our love – love for God and love for our neighbor."
Children, God has created you and me in the image of God. And for that reason, you and I are special and important to God. We are precious in His sight. You and I are valuable. We have worth in God’s sight. But in His goodness, God also created us with unique abilities to glorify Him. He gave us skills and talents. And part of glorifying God is to develop and express those skills or talents He has freely given us.
I hope your motive in presenting your talent is to glorify God and not to gain the approval or applause of your parents or your friends. Our worth does not depend on what we do or how we do things. Our worth depends on the fact that God has made us in his image, and that’s especially important for us who are children of God by faith in our Lord Jesus Christ because we know that we have been accepted by God, not on the basis of what we do, but on the basis of what Christ has done for us when He pleased and glorify God all his life, even in dying for our place at the cross of Calvary. The expression of your talents this afternoon is one way of recognizing the gift that God has given you and thanking Him for that gift.
So I hope that you will give all your best to glorify the Lord and to honor Him for giving you unique talent or talents. We understand that you are not yet professionals. Your talents are still developing. Some talents, of course, are well-developed than others. So don’t be afraid to express them. And please don’t be dismayed, frustrated or ashamed when you commit mistakes in playing the instrument or playing the notes or singing or reciting even a certain line or lyrics that you forgot.
Again you are not performing for anyone’s approval. You are performing to thank God and honor Him with your talent. We are here as your parents to cheer you up, to guide you and to tell you that we love you. Your presentation will not lessen or increase our love for you. We love you as the Lord has loved us and we want you to do everything with the strength and skill God has given you for His praise and glory. Remember that.
I hope we, parents, remember that also: that God values us and loves us not because of what we do but because He created us in His own image and He has saved us in Christ and through Christ.
So let us celebrate and thank God in giving our children the talents they are going to present this afternoon. Raw or developed talents, they are from God and we ought to thank Him and enjoy their expression. God bless you, dear children! Glorify God with what he has given you.