Talent is defined as "an inclination, propensity or disposition for anything; disposition or state of mind or character; mental endowment, natural ability; a power or ability of mind or body viewed as something divinely entrusted to a person for use and improvement, considered as either one or a number of distinct faculties; a special natural ability or aptitude, usually for something expressed or implied; a natural capacity for success in some department of mental or physical activity; aptitudes or faculties of various kinds; mental powers of superior order; mental power or ability; cleverness; talent as embodied in the talented."

“Each talent is a jewel in the rough, whose facets you must cut and polish.”

The world views talents as God-given gifts or special abilities of mind or of the physical body. On the Via Christa, we extend the definition of a talent to include spiritual faculties, powers of soul or virtues, such as intuition, clairvoyance, clairaudience or other mediatorial abilities. Each soul bears the seeds of greatness: While God does give us the rudimentary faculties, power and virtues of soul, He expects us to unfold and develop them all to their full potential, which requires personal responsibility, dedication, obedience to law, and perfect discipline of the self over time.

Your soul will recollect the many talents, virtues and soul powers then remind you of those you have developed and those awaiting your further polishing. Each talent is a jewel in the rough, whose facets you must cut and polish before you can add them to your individual Crown of "I AM," which is Christed consciousness.

Edna Lister on Talents

It makes no difference what you desire to do, you may do it if you invest ten minutes each day in exercising your talent, and another ten minutes a day in study. Doing this repeatedly, you win the race as did the steadfast tortoise, who won against the hare in Aesop's fable. – Edna Lister, The Life Powerful, September 21, 1934.

You come to earth to express your soul talents and obedience to law, as the Master did as a child. Jesus, during the "lost years," was trained and underwent temptation and trials in the denial and sacrifice of self, until he became selfless in his sacrificial service. – Edna Lister, Parents and Children, August 4, 1935.

You could have all the riches of the world, a treasure house filled with caskets and chests spilling over with gold and jewels. Yet if you leave them lying in the dark, unseen and unused, they are but dormant, of no real use. If you had the greatest talent in the world, it would mean nothing unless you developed it. To sit in a darkened room, holding an unlit candle is foolish, useless unless you light it. – Edna Lister, Palms to the Victor, March 29, 1942.

You have greater talents right now than many who are doing the greater works. Too many find it easier to sit back and criticize the one who is doing rather than to do it themselves. You can do anything you desire to, accomplish any goal, but you must accept the fact that you will have to work for it. You cannot pick your talents from the Tree of Life like ornaments from a Christmas tree, no. Instead, you must grow your talents from within, like a peach tree grows peaches. To do this, you must awaken your faculty of desire.

Imagination is the builder of forms for desire to fill. When you accept that you must work hard, imagination goes into action, backed by love and wisdom. Imagination is wisdom's building tool, and love fuels your flaming desire. Then you must do something about fulfilling your desires, and you must persist. Praise will release the Power you need to reach the goal or to fill any prayer mold. Thank the Father that He is increasing your talents. That way you keep your desire always going higher, climbing higher, releasing more Power to complete your outer creations. – Edna Lister, The Joyful Conqueror, June 7, 1942.

So many people are proud of the fact that they are satisfied with the little they have in life. If you just let life flow through you and past you, you might as well be living in a coma. Remember the Parable of the Ten Talents: "Unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath." – Matthew 25:29. – Edna Lister, The Trinities of Creation, March 17, 1945.

"A man's gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men." – Proverbs 18:16. The Mind of God contains all the ideas, which you can praise into expansion. Praise opens all vibrations, and increases all gifts and talents. – Edna Lister, Promises Fulfilled, March 4, 1948.

“Praise opens all vibrations, and increases all gifts and talents.”

A proverb describes expansion: "A man's gift makes room for him and brings him before great men." – Proverbs 18:16. Your innate talents expand with use, and usually branch into new talents. Under law, when you give up enough traits of self, you attract love. As you become love, you attract more love. As you experience this love, you decide to give more to the Father, to be noble – later you find the old situation has disappeared. To take just one step toward using your talent or gift opens an expansion period. Remember, expansion means to do, to act. In which direction are you going, as a creature or a creator? Do you plan to grab for self, or to let soul use your self? – Edna Lister, Getting or Letting: Self or Soul, June 27, 1948.

What talent do creators have in common? They use their imagination to picture their goal. They ask greatly of themselves. They seek to serve and are always seeking new ways to do so. They knock insistently at life's door as an act of faith. – Edna Lister, Treasures in Heaven, July 24, 1949.

If you are "neither cold nor hot," you are lukewarm. Those who fear failure will escape into apathy, which leads to ice coldness that freezes their talents. Lukewarmness is the room temperature where an escapist hides. Such people do not use their discernment, discrimination or discretion faculties, and are of little use to themselves or their families. You must use your talents at the boiling point to succeed. – Edna Lister, Behold, I Stand at the Door, November 29, 1953.

Do you want to be a vessel, a channel or an instrument? A vessel holds something, usually a liquid, but unless you pour it out, its contents will evaporate and the residue will stink. A channel is just a groove, dug in the dirt. Like the man in the parable, who buried his talent, a channel gains and retains nothing. A musical instrument gives. It stands ready to be used by the Almighty Symphonist to create beauty and harmony wherever it is played. – Edna Lister, Righteousness, April 7, 1954.

St. Paul said, "I die daily." You can either live by self and die to God, or feed your soul. If you live by self, God will take the little that you have, as in the Parable of the Talents. – Edna Lister, Your Life Plan, May 16, 1954.

You have a private account in God's Reserve Bank that contains all your buried talents and hidden treasure of substance and life. It is glory and all "added things" to come, waiting, waiting, waiting. Although God knows when you need the substance, you have the key. Even He cannot confiscate your key or unlock this storehouse for you. You must use your own key to open the lock. – Edna Lister, Your "Added Things," May 22, 1955.

"A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men." – Proverbs 18:16. Many gifts come to you from the outside, but talents are also gifts, which grow from within, according to your desire. Without training, your gift may remain useless. Exercise and practice using your gifts. Learn to use what you have, where you are. Every day, do something toward fulfilling your life plan. – Edna Lister, Heavenly Manna, August 14, 1955.

“Talents grow from within, according to your desire, and with training.”

"A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men." – Proverbs 18:16. Do you get this gift from the outside? No, your gifts are your desires, your talents, which you must exercise and use right where you are. A true gift needs no training to fulfill itself, for you never spend a moment separate from it. Exercise your talents to do something toward your large life plan. – Edna Lister, Manna From Heaven, August 21, 1955.

Your wealthy Father multiplies your talents and gifts. Idle words subtract from your heavenly bank account and royal gifts. – Edna Lister, Your Philosophy of Freedom, June 28, 1959.

Bring forth your talents as a creator. Tomorrow is yours, so make your tomorrow a glory. – Edna Lister, Tomorrow Is Yours, December 13, 1959.

Singing opens the way for perfect use of all you are and all you have in talents, love, time and effort. When you praise and sing fervently, God moves in with lavish increase. – Edna Lister, Increase Through High Prayer, July 3, 1960.

Dedicate your life to developing your talents and dreams. If you have none, it's a humdrum existence. You must dedicate your life, above all, to be used by the Power of God for the greater works, to become perfect. – Edna Lister, Ask in My Name, May 27, 1963.

What is your path of destiny? Various talents are ready to unfold in you, but you must come to earth to earn and develop them. – Edna Lister, Light on the Path, July 6, 1969.

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Edna Miriam Lister
The original Pioneering Mystic
minister, teacher, and author

Edna Lister

Etymology of talent: Medieval Latin talenta, "inclination, leaning, will, desire", in classical Latin "balance, weight; sum of money," from Greek talanton "a balance, pair of scales," hence "weight, definite weight, anything weighed," and in later times a sum of money."


The Compact Edition of The Oxford English Dictionary: 2 volumes. E.S.C. Weiner, editor. Oxford University Press, 1971.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

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