Friday, June 4, 2010

"To whom much is given, much is required" (JFK)

President John F. Kennedy included this statement in a speech that he delivered on January 9, 1961 in Massachusetts. Not many are aware that this statement is derived from the Holy Bible:

"For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required;" ~~ Luke 12:48 (New King James Version)

So what is the big message behind this statement ? Well, it is simple. When you are blessed with gifts, talents, material things, whatever it may be, those blessings come with great responsibility.  Are we being truly responsible with all we are blessed with ?

Following the mentioned statement, President Kennedy stated the following in his speech :

"And when at some future date the high court of history sits in judgment on each one of us--recording whether in our brief span of service we fulfilled our responsibilities to the state--our success or failure, in whatever office we may hold, will be measured by the answers to four questions:

First, were we truly men of courage ?
Secondly, were we truly men of judgment ?
Third, were we truly men of integrity ?
Finally, were we truly men of dedication ? "

Those are wonderful questions. Those questions may very easily be applied to our walk with God.  When our time is up in this life and we come face-to-face with our Maker, what will our responses be to those questions ? Have we truly been responsible and done all that we could ? Perhaps we think we have gone above and beyond what average people do,  but is that truly what God wants from us ? Has He been trying to penetrate the coldness in our hearts and we continue ignoring Him ?

What will we say when He is before us and He asks ...

Were you truly a man/woman of courage ? Did you have the courage to stand up against the enemy and fight the good fight ? Did you have the courage to take leaps of faith even when your eyes and ears saw and heard no signs of victory nearby ? Did you have the courage to love your God with all your heart and soul even though those around you criticized you ?  Did you have the courage to be honest with yourself and accept that you cannot do everything ? Did you have the courage to truly ask God for help ?

Were you truly a man/woman of judgment ? Did you use your best judgment to make wise decisions for yourself and your family ? Did you use your judgment to learn from your mistakes or did you make the same mistakes over and over again ? Did you use your judgment to associate yourself with the right people ? Did you use your judgment to keep yourself and your family safe ? Did you use your judgment to realize that without God you are nothing ?

Were you truly a man/woman of integrity ? Did you value integrity or was money and power more important to you ? Did you make sound judgments or did you live a careless life not considering the consequences of your actions ?  Was TRUTH valuable to you or was it easier for you to LIE your way through everything ? Did you turn your back on integrity because you knew that it would interfere with your ungodly ways ?

Were you truly a man/woman of dedication ? Did you dedicate enough time to God ? Did you dedicate enough time to your husband/wife and children ? Did you dedicate enough time to stop and appreciate the beauty all around you ? Did you dedicate enough time to worship God, to thank God for all He did for you ? Did you dedicate enough time to reflect on your life ? Did you dedicate enough time to forgive others ?

If we cannot be trusted with the "little" that we have, how can we then be trusted with more ? God will not release more blessings to us until we learn how to manage what we now have.  Ego has no place in the equation.  When we put aside all narcissistic behavior and attitudes, maybe then we will be able to hear God's voice and walk with Him hand-in-hand.  Until then, we continue swimming against the current instead of flowing with it and allowing it to take us where we should be; in His arms.

References: John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum. (n.d.). Address of President-Elect John F. Kennedy Delivered to a Joint Convention of the General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved from

1 comment:

  1. Were we truly men of courage? Were we truly men of judgment? Were we truly men of integrity? Were we truly men of dedication?

    Your questions are questions I ask myself daily as my head hits the pillow at night.
    Was I all you intended for me today? Did I make the right choices with the information I had on hand? Did I seize the opportunity to do right by others? Even to those that may not be so kind to me? Lord, did I offend Thee?

    I have a long way to go … but as they say “I may not be where I need to be but I thank God I am NOT where I use to be” …

    AMEN to that!


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