The NBC TV show Americas Got Talent just started its 7th season. Americas Got Talent is a contest to find the most talented people in America. It features some interesting people who showcase their unique talents or lack of talents in hopes of winning the million dollar prize and moving on to fame.
The individuals or teams who make it to the finals have found, developed, and focused on their talents. They have maximized their talents while the people who are quickly eliminated often have an unrealistic image of their true talents. This TV show can show and teach us that everyone has talents, however not everyone has fully discovered them.
Mark Twain wrote a wonderful story illustrating this point in The Greatest General:
A man died and met Saint Peter at the gates of heaven. Recognizing the saint’s knowledge and wisdom, he wanted to ask him a question. “Saint Peter’, he said, “I have been interested in the military history for many years. Tell me, who was the greatest general of all times?” Peter quickly responded, “O that is a simple question. It’s that man right over there.” The man looked where Peter was pointing and answered, “You must be mistaken. I knew that man on earth, and he was just a common laborer.” “That’s right,” Peter remarked, “but he would have been the greatest general of all time-if he had been a general.”
This is a powerful story showing the importance of finding your personal talents then to start use them. It allows you to be reaching for your potential and be moving toward your purpose. This is because no one else has your unique talents or can become the person you where intended to become. Former NBA basketball player and coach Larry Bird said, “A winner is someone who recognizes his (or her) God-given talents, works his (or her) tail off to develop them into skills, and uses those skills to accomplish his (or her) goals.”
Questions: Have you watched Americas got Talent? How important are your talents in your life and leadership?