Faux gifts, trying to figure out what a real natural talent is from a fake talent. I truly believe in a God who dispenses with natural talents for each of us to practice. In our infinite likeness, we possess a modicum of difference to set ourselves apart. Undeniably, there are some humans whose bounty seems abundantly full of raw talent, where others might wonder why they only have a thimble full amount to draw from.
How can we identify a true talent from a lesser gift? An engineer with a grasp for complex mechanisms might be deathly afraid of group interaction, so for him he would do best as a secluded mad genius. A super natural speaker who could sell gasoline to a crowd on fire is rare, but take away his speaker notes and he is deduced to an un-rhythmic set of “um and ah’s”. Do natural gifts need to coincide with other abilities for full effect? What good is a professional historian with a terrible memory? Do you know what your list of abilities are? Have you ever taken the time to break down how much time you spend doing something you are remedial at versus what comes naturally?
Some gifts are learned. The world’s best or funniest comedians came about by unbelievably difficult trial and error. It isn’t like there are seven year olds with uncanny timing reenacting Jerry Seinfeld’s “Soup Nazi” episode during lunch break. Being a successful comedian means you paid your dues, you’ve had to vet out lots of dogged material to find what works and with whom. So we know with out the slightest doubt good ability can be honed and not natural. Practice makes perfect isn’t cliché for no reason. Any art we desire to master takes familiarization, tedious replication and exploration.
How About Your Natural Talent?
Recently I have engaged in deep conversations about spiritual gifts with those close to me. We were talking of interests we have, ideas and or hobbies we wish we had time to pursue. For a few of us we struggle with what our occupation is in context with what we are suitable for. Do we choose our jobs or does our ability choose our occupation? I am taking online college courses for a business degree, often there are 50 and 60 year olds who are studying in field that has always been their passion, but they never had the time. Why do we devote a lifetime to a career that doesn’t match our gifts?
Just how many future Stephen King’s or Danielle Steel’s are on Hubpages? I have been writing on and off since I was a freshman in high school. There have been years in between me picking up a pen, or writing a short bit on the computer. At different stages of my life I have felt the red hot heat of urgency to write and then without warning its back to cold turkey. When is this feeling to excel a passion and when is it just motion? Are they inseparable? A good salesman has bad days to be sure, but he or she must still earn a paycheck and fight through the anxiety of difficult bread winning. Writers block, stress, working at a real job, we have plenty of excuses to stop us in our tracks. But what if there is a true purpose for our talent, something which has not been revealed to us?
There is without a doubt in my life a reason for working in the current location I am at. There is without a doubt purpose for me to be involved with a few of my employee’s lives. The skills God gave me as a sales manager allows me to dig deeper and challenge more aggressively those who are struggling in their environment. My own questions are derived from the fact that I still think I should never give up writing, but I cannot find a purpose just yet. I know I have not hit the stride I am looking for, I know the material isn’t exactly broken down just how I would prefer it, moreover I believe I am going through a motion of practice that’s bringing me closer to knowing the prior unknown. If I am really good in one field which I currently occupy, why did this other minor talent become such a stumbling block?
One theory I have is personal. In this life we pass the time very similar from one another. 99% of us have to earn a living and provide for others. In that field of earning, we spend over a third of our life while just under a third of our life is spent sleeping. It is our middle third for which God knew we needed something to busy our hands, challenge our minds and hopefully keep us from trouble. I look to my writing as my second and minor talent to my first. This affords me a creative outlet to hone my skills and explore my thoughts with like minded writers. Others may begin to recognize deeper interests in other fields. It isn’t for me to say what is a fake talent, but it certainly opens the door for retrospective review.
“whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not men, since you know you will receive the inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” Colossians 3:23-24
“every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17
Interestingly enough, it has been a couple years since I wrote this hub on talent and as with many of you, life continues to throw curve balls, one after another. I have since moved to two other states, taken two more job promotions and as such, I am spending nearly two thirds of my time on career. I've picked up a new hobby which allows me to try a new mode of writing in the form of stereo equipment reviewing. I never realized how hard it is to change writing styles to accommodate what I would consider an entertaining and informative product review. I still make the time to read more than a dozen publications each month, each being related to my new hobby and therefore I am picking up one styles I like and ignoring those I dislike.
I would be remiss if I did not mention my own self-loathing for dropping the ball on my writing. I let far too much candle light burn away while I toil for a company that will not see me through in my creative years. Each of us come upon this proverbial crossroads, the fork in the road where we realize we are going to turn from one destination to reach another. The path of least resistance is a devilish plan to distract and occupy ones mind. Success will only come to the diligent and with a little bit of luck, we get to finally provide for ourselves from the trough our own natural talent. Time will tell...