The power of story telling is demonstrated in a short parable taught by Jesus Christ. "Talents" in this parable refer to money, but there are many ways to invest in what we value. Join us as we discuss a hierarchy of investments and why we recommend prioritizing investing in yourself over time and money.
The power of story telling is demonstrated in a short parable taught by Jesus Christ. "Talents" in this parable refer to money, but there are many ways to invest in what we value. Join us as we discuss a hierarchy of investments and why we recommend prioritizing investing in yourself over time and money.
Ep. 20-For the Parable of the Talented Filmmaker
Anna Thalman: [00:00:00] [00:00:00]All right. Today, we decided to call this episode.
For the parable of the talented filmmaker.
Kent Thalman: [00:00:38] By We,
Anna Thalman: [00:00:40] you mean, you
Kent Thalman: [00:00:41] no, you mean you
Anna Thalman: [00:00:42] don't want to take credit
Kent Thalman: [00:00:43] no
Anna Thalman: [00:00:44] you came up with that.
Kent Thalman: [00:00:45] I did not come up with that,
Anna Thalman: [00:00:46] Yes you did
Kent Thalman: [00:00:47] No I did not
great start. Okay. maybe we'll change the title, whatever the title is. I came up with it, if it's excellent. And I came up with it, if it's not good [00:01:00] you might be right. I might've just, I think I threw that into a Google doc as a joke, and it's somehow ended up on. Yeah, it just happened
Anna Thalman: [00:01:09] Sometimes I don't know if you're joking or not, Okay.
Kent Thalman: [00:01:11] we wanted to, actually just read our source material really quick at the beginning of this and talk about it. There's a principle here that we think applies to anyone now, whatever your, Outlook on life is whether you're religious or not. we're just going to read this thing out of the new Testament in the Bible. This is Jesus's parable of the talents. I think there's a lot of value here and just give it a good listen here. All right. So we're in Matthew 25,
Anna Thalman: [00:01:37] 14 through 30.
Kent Thalman: [00:01:39] Let's give it a read for the kingdom of heaven is as a man traveling. Into a far country who called his own servants and delivered unto them, his goods.
Anna Thalman: [00:01:51] And unto one, he gave five talents to another two and to another one to every man, according to his several ability [00:02:00] and straightway took his journey.
Kent Thalman: [00:02:01] So talents is money. So he gave three servants, differing amounts of money. Then he, that had received the five talents, went and traded with the same and made them other five talents.
Anna Thalman: [00:02:15] And likewise, he, that had received two also gained other two,
Kent Thalman: [00:02:19] but he, that had received one went and digged in the earth and hid his Lord's money.
Anna Thalman: [00:02:26] After a long time, the Lord of those servants cometh and reckoneth with them.
Kent Thalman: [00:02:30] And so he, that had received five talents came and brought other five talents saying, Lord thou deliverest unto me, five talents. Behold, I have gained besides them five talents more. So he had five talents. He made five more. He doubled his money and gave it back to the master.
Anna Thalman: [00:02:49] His Lord said unto him. Well done. thou good and faithful servant thou has been faithful over a few things. I will make thee ruler over many things. Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.
[00:03:00] Kent Thalman: [00:03:00] So we're going to get back to that again. that phrase it'll come up again really quick. Here is the theme of this podcast. He also, that had received two talents came and said, Lord thou deliverest unto me two talents. Behold, I have gained two other talents beside them.
Anna Thalman: [00:03:17] His Lord said unto him. Well done. Good. And faithful servant thou has been faithful over a few things. I will make the ruler over. Many things, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.
Kent Thalman: [00:03:28] Then he, which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art and hard man reaping where thou has not sown and gathering where thou has not. Strawed.
Anna Thalman: [00:03:39] And I was afraid and went and hid my talent in the earth low there thou hast. That is thyne.
Kent Thalman: [00:03:46] In other words, here, have your money back. I didn't lose it. His Lord answered and said unto him, thou wicked. And slothful servant thou newest that I reaped where I sowed not and gather where I have not strawed.
Anna Thalman: [00:03:58] Thou oddest, therefore [00:04:00] to have put my money to the exchangers. And then at my coming, I should have received mine own with earth usury,
Kent Thalman: [00:04:06] so usury means interest. he's basically saying you haven't paid your debt back. You borrowed money and then you returned it. But if you borrow money via a credit card or some sort of loan, you have to pay the interest, take therefore the talent from him and give it. Unto him, which hath 10 talents
Anna Thalman: [00:04:25] for unto everyone 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.
Kent Thalman: [00:04:36] So essentially he had three servants, they all got different amounts of money. Two of them doubled their money. Grew it in any degree in this case, they doubled it. And the third one buried it, and he buried it it because He was afraid of losing it. He was afraid of failure. He was afraid of. Who knows what, he was afraid of his master and what his master might do to him. Ironically, and the other two were told that because they were [00:05:00] faithful over a few things. I don't know. I suppose the talent was like an enormous amount of money. but they were faithful over it. They took care of it. They took responsibility over it. They grew it. And what happened? They were made rulers over many things. They were made stewards. They were entrusted with more. I think that's how the world is. That is something, that I've learned many times. This is why. So many of us have found that we have to work for free before we work for money, that we have to be willing to sacrifice and risk before we're rewarded.
we have to step into the unknown before we progress and see new things and understand things we didn't before. but when we're afraid and we don't step into it at all, we don't risk. We don't try, we don't move forward. we don't ask hard questions. We don't take the first steps Then we actually, lose what stewardship we had over what little we had. sometimes that doesn't feel fair, but I think that's how the world works and how the universe works.
Anna Thalman: [00:05:56] Yeah. I love that this story is so simple and [00:06:00] Christ would tell these very short little stories So many people can take so many different things from them. what I got from it is very different from what you got from it, but there's so many lessons available here. we've got the three characters, I naturally compare them a little bit and say, one of them had 10 to begin with. The other one had five. And the other had no, it was. What was five, two and one, sorry, And so five and two are interesting because they both went and took what they had and invested it and brought something back. clearly they were not equal in what they had available to them or what they were able to bring back with that. But because they took what they had and they made the best of it, they received the same reward. And so in some ways you might say it's unfair for the one who was only given. Two talents that he wasn't given as much as the one who had five talents, it's probably easier to have the five talents, a little less risk or a little more to spend, and yet you could also look at it and say, that's not fair. That the one who only had two talents got the same [00:07:00] reward as the one who only had, five,
Kent Thalman: [00:07:02] who made more.
Anna Thalman: [00:07:03] Yeah. But the point is, it's not about. Fairness it's about taking and using what you have and making the best of it.
Kent Thalman: [00:07:09] The degree of resourcefulness or responsibility that that person exercised over, whatever it was that they had was what mattered to the person taking an accounting of his servants.
Anna Thalman: [00:07:19] and I don't listen to a ton of Tony Robbins. But I have heard him talk about resources versus resourcefulness. And that is something I love that he talks about. Is it actually, isn't about your resources. It's about your resourcefulness and you can have a resource and not even know how to use it or know that it's available to you. And it's no good.
Kent Thalman: [00:07:37] Can I jump on that for a second?
Anna Thalman: [00:07:38] Yeah.
Kent Thalman: [00:07:39] I think something that Brooke Castillo talks about that this is one of the most revolutionary things that I've ever heard. At least it was revolutionary for me, that she has talked about is this idea of the hierarchy of investments and how there are three things that we always talk about and we really prioritize them backwards a lot of the times. And she talks about, we all have a certain amount of. knowledge, our [00:08:00] brains intelligence, whatever you want to call it. We all have a fixed amount of time. and then we all have a certain amount of money. a lot of us invest in and prioritize money. And I think it's real that the people who jump right to money are the ones that in high school put all their time into working. then in college, if they go to college, sometimes they don't go to college and they just work and they say, I'm just going to work and make money right now. what's funny is that those people don't actually make as much money in the long run because they are prioritized. They've prioritized upside down. the thing that's actually most valuable to prioritize is our brains, our knowledge, our understanding, our development of ourselves. because you could go to Steven Spielberg and take away every penny he has, and he would be a millionaire in less than a year because he knows how to make movies. He knows how to get them produced funded, made. He knows how to direct them. He knows how to walk them through the whole process and he would figure it out because he had the intellectual resources to do it. And he is invested in that way. And so I think when you talk about resources versus resourcefulness, resourcefulness is the brain [00:09:00] is the intelligence, the knowledge that's the resource that you're investing in is resourcefulness. But when you invest in resources, such as money. Or material resources. we've all seen it. We've seen people who have been put at the helm of huge movies or big responsibilities happens in the corporate world all the time, over big companies. they're totally not ready. They've not actually invested sufficiently in their own personal character, brains, intelligence, to be able to handle that particular opportunity. And they end up like this guy who buries his thing in the dirt because he doesn't take chances. He doesn't understand how to navigate. The responsibility of, possessing these talents, which is an almost fortuitous plan, easy play on words. But we prioritize them in that way.
Anna Thalman: [00:09:38] I love that you brought that into this because it is a story about investment and what do we invest in? And she says, first invest in your brain because no one can take that away from you. And it's unlimited the most valuable thing that you have is. Your education, your knowledge, that you can invest into
Kent Thalman: [00:09:53] and your character. it's another form of knowledge to have them ethical or moral intelligence, which when you don't have it, people blow it. They sleep with the [00:10:00] wrong people. they take money from the people. They shouldn't, they blow it and, everything comes to an end. And that's a form of intelligence. That's very important. Anyway, just throwing that out there.
Anna Thalman: [00:10:07] So she says, first invest in your brain. Second, I believe was time.
Kent Thalman: [00:10:11] Yep. Because time is limited. It's finite. She explains that there's only 24 hours in a day, no matter who you are.
Anna Thalman: [00:10:17] So if you can save time by investing in something,
Kent Thalman: [00:10:20] spend the money and get the time
Anna Thalman: [00:10:21] it's very valuable. And then the very last investment, which is usually what people invest in first is money because it's unlimited and you can lose it in a second. I mean, they're all good investments, but it's nice to see that order.
Kent Thalman: [00:10:31] And they're all investments that we should take responsibility for. in our lives, our personal finances, our time that we have, we have to take responsibility for our time. No one else will. our minds, our character, our brains are, that internal part of us
Anna Thalman: [00:10:43] well, Amber Castillo is the one who created the life coach school that I went through. And she's a multimillionaire. coach, she's very good at what she does and often was given investment opportunities. Why don't you invest your money in these apartment complexes I'm just going to invest it into me. and that's, crucial to how she grew her business, [00:11:00] because she is so good at what she does. She always chose to invest in her brain becoming the best at what she does instead of investing in other people's companies.
Kent Thalman: [00:11:08] not that it's bad to invest in others. I know that she does invest in others, but she's invested in others that are moving forward. The mission that she has, she's not just trying grow that money in this sort of independent way. by the way, I don't think there's anything wrong with investing in other people's companies,
Anna Thalman: [00:11:20] No I don't think so either
Kent Thalman: [00:11:21] or even investing in the stock market. as long as you're doing it, honestly, and I personally have little interest in stock trading. I don't know. Maybe one day I'll get good at it, but I, don't know nothing about it. but I like that idea of just saying, this is something that matters to me and I'm just going to put my money there because guess what? If I lose all my money, at least first of all, I lost it in something I believe in. And second of all, I lost it doing the most valuable thing, which is learning. which really is the most valuable thing is to learn. And I've found that's why risk is so valuable, because you always learn when you take chances, especially when you take chances on something that's worth it. That's good.
Anna Thalman: [00:11:51] there's a lot of good lessons in this parable. Do you mind if I share why it's personal to me?
Kent Thalman: [00:11:56] Yes.
Anna Thalman: [00:11:56] You do mind.
Kent Thalman: [00:11:57] Yup. You're not allowed to share personal things on this podcast. I'm Sorry
Anna Thalman: [00:11:59] you'll have [00:12:00] To cut it out later. actually this, parable is very personal to me because, it changed the way I looked at balancing film and family, which is what this whole podcast is about
Kent Thalman: [00:12:09] Okay, you're allowed to share it. Sorry.
Anna Thalman: [00:12:10] I became a mom and became very busy and had suddenly this huge responsibility to take care of kids who need a lot of things. And for a little while, I was a stay at home mom and I wasn't doing film at all. I remember feeling. Bad in that situation. that doesn't mean that all people feel that way. Some people feel great being stay-at-home moms,
Kent Thalman: [00:12:32] that's a prime example of circumstances in the model. You can feel anything in any circumstance based on your thoughts about it.
Anna Thalman: [00:12:38] for me personally, I felt like I read this parable and I thought not only. Am I going to lose what I have if I don't use my talent, what I've studied and invested so much in to become good at of filmmaking, it's actually a commandment from God that I use all of the talents that he's given me and that I go make something of them and I don't hide them away. it was just [00:13:00] permission for me. that was a huge breakthrough because I always had this idea that watching kids is more important and more righteous to stay home and watch the kids and being this traditional family structure. And I do think the kids are more important than film, but it doesn't mean I can't do both. And that I. Will be worse at one because I do the other, I've actually found the opposite to be true.
Kent Thalman: [00:13:21] I think that it's just you taking responsibility over another part of your life. I think that's, by the way, our feeling on this podcast as hosts, we can share our feelings with you, about gender roles and about is a career less important than. Raising children for a woman, our feelings are, yes, it's less important than children. And that's also true for men my career as a man is less important than my children. My children are way more important than my job. They're way more important than how I make money. it's that whole thing that I just quoted this in the last episode, I'll quote it again. Stephen King said art is a support system for life, not the other way around. I write books. Now I'm falsely quoting Stephen King because I have kids because I have a family because I have a life a [00:14:00] real life. I'm a real person with real relationships. That's what I use to fuel it. I create it and put it on paper that today is, and tomorrow is burned in the furnace, it's, less important, that doesn't mean you don't do it because you're growing who you are as a person. then who you are as a person gets to become that parent, as really interesting, it is a responsibility.
Anna Thalman: [00:14:18] even the idea of tithing is really helpful for me. So we pay 10% of everything we make, personally to tithing. we're very religious in that way, It doesn't mean that we give all of the money that we make. It's just the way we set it up. That's the first thing we do. with our finances, the money comes in 10% immediately goes to tithing, then we do what we do with the rest. I had that realization that I can do that with my priorities, with my time as well. And just say, I don't have to give all of my time to my children for them to be my most important. Priority. I just need to first make sure that time is set aside for them. when we're planning and we'll do another podcast about our weekly planning process, it's pretty revolutionary for us as well. [00:15:00] we plan in order of our priorities. The time that I spend with my kids goes on my calendar before my work stuff goes on my calendar and it doesn't take up the whole calendar, but it goes on there first. it's more important and it will happen.
Kent Thalman: [00:15:12] it's this idea That we've realized putting the top priorities in unmovable places, right? they are the top priority. if nothing else happens, those things happen. what ends up happening is you actually get way more. Of those things to happen when you do it in the right order. We've talked about this in our podcast episode called time and order. I wanted to mention that is essentially what Stephen Covey talks about when he puts the sand in the jar there's a famous video where he tells this woman who visited one of his conferences to put all the pebbles and then put all the rocks in. And it's impossible that ever fit in. You push it into the sand. You can't push them into the sand without breaking the glass. then he says, okay, Put the rocks in first, the big ones, now put all the pebbles in second then put all the sand in and it all fits. it's this idea of prioritize the first things first and your life will fit together. It'll work. It works that way. Otherwise everything falls apart. recognize what's the right priority. just because I personally [00:16:00] find it really important to read my scriptures. I want to read the word of God every day. We're getting really into the faith here today in this episode.
that for me is a personally very high priority. That doesn't mean that's what I do all day long. I do it for 30 minutes, it's very important to me that it happens. And so I make sure that it happens and I do it first. and that informs the rest of my day. So whatever that is to you, talk to yourself about your priorities and. Put those things in immoveable places do it first thing in the morning, if that's what helps or do it before you go to bed and say, I don't go to sleep until this thing happens, there are movable priorities. And so, what got us on this rant?
Anna Thalman: [00:16:29] this is why it's personal to me, this parable. I think I had an all or nothing perspective of
Kent Thalman: [00:16:35] full-time mom or full-time
Anna Thalman: [00:16:36] yeah. the best mom I can be, which is full-time. This is all I do. I don't do anything else or I'm not the best mom I can be. it was black and white in my mind. And realizing that God wants me to use all of the talents that he's given me. and not bury any of them. He was upset with the unprofitable servant and he didn't get his reward because he buried his talent. And I was thinking I was a worse mom, if I didn't bury that other [00:17:00] talent and just give everything to mom.
Kent Thalman: [00:17:02] that's partly why I think being a hermit or a monk or a nun or something, actually, isn't really productive. I don't think it's actually productive spiritually. I don't think it's productive to go all or nothing into anything. that actually leads to fanaticism. that's a very strong opinion and I don't want to say anything wrong about some really remarkable people. Who've made remarkable sacrifices for spirituality, but even Victor Hugo, as a novelist, the one who wrote the hunchback of Notre dame and Les Miserables, talked about at one point in his career, he, was just writing That's all he did. He wrote constantly. And he started to make time in his life for physical labor. He said, I feel like I need another part of myself. I need another part of my life. And he said, people ask me if I have missed that time. being fully dedicated to writing. And he said, no, I found myself to be much more productive because I actually have something to write about. I actually have a life outside of writing, and, it's just this idea of breaking it up enough that these things can inform each other. Oh, we watched a Ted talk. Boy, if I find it, I'll put it in the show notes where he said that he had these three passions and he went to this professor that he trusted very deeply. And he said, tell me which one of [00:18:00] these I should do and tell me the other two. That I should just swear off because I just feel so passionate about these three things. the professor said, that's the stupidest question anyone has ever asked me? And he said, this is not the answer I was expecting. He says, you're asking me which two of the three essential limbs you should chop off and which one you should wobble away on hobble away on. Wobble and hobble and he basically said you've got to live with these three things, and that's where you're going to find your purpose is where these three things meet. I have found that when I can synthesize my priorities as a person who wants to be serving in a church, as well as someone who wants to be providing abundantly in a film career with, for my family my actual relationship with that family, want to let those things synthesize and mesh and inform each other as much as possible until I'm always doing all three, I'm always serving or helping or loving or expressing or creating. That's what they all are. they start to blend as much as possible. And that's actually what this podcast has been, I think, as you and I blending those priorities, your coaching career. And our film career and our family priorities. We're letting those things inform [00:19:00] each other in this podcast. and it's just one way that we've allowed those things to bleed together. And maybe these things will add some things will podcasts may end, and films will come and go. but there's other parts of our lives that won't, and we just let them. blend together, but we don't ever cut off one responsibility and say, I'm just gonna bear that one in the dirt and leave it be,
Anna Thalman: [00:19:18] it makes me think of, Austin Kleon talks about, instead of trying to find your style or your thing, just let you be the common denominator. And for a long time,
Kent Thalman: [00:19:26] don't curate your work.
Anna Thalman: [00:19:27] It's just what they all have in common is you you might not think that life coaching has anything to do with filmmaking,
Kent Thalman: [00:19:33] or that Parenthood has anything to do with
Anna Thalman: [00:19:35] exactly
Kent Thalman: [00:19:36] film, directing or writing.
Anna Thalman: [00:19:37] These random things, but they all come together and make me unique as a, person and an artist,
Kent Thalman: [00:19:41] which is the definition of creativity is finding a unity between two seemingly unrelated
Anna Thalman: [00:19:46] and combining things that never been combined in that way before.
Kent Thalman: [00:19:49] when you combined. Beautiful fonts and user experience with of an interface of a computer, which was all text-based. he basically invented the graphic user interface, looking at icons and buttons and an [00:20:00] artistic way to tell a computer what to do instead of a. Command prompt line, it sounds so obvious to us now we take it. So for granted, yet he actually had that epiphany of saying, what if we took beautiful typefaces, which was a calligraphy class that he took in college before he dropped out of college and combined that with. commands in a computer that most people don't want to use. So that would help the computer be more sellable to normal humans.
Anna Thalman: [00:20:20] I didn't realize he took a calligraphy class. That's really cool.
Kent Thalman: [00:20:23] And then he dropped out of college,
Anna Thalman: [00:20:24] it worked out for him. the other person I think of is Robert Frost and someday. I'm going to make a biopic of Robert Frost. I really love him.
Kent Thalman: [00:20:31] Don't tell anyone
Anna Thalman: [00:20:31] don't steal.
Kent Thalman: [00:20:32] You're not allowed,
Anna Thalman: [00:20:33] please.
Kent Thalman: [00:20:33] You're not allowed to do it. I'm talking to you podcast listeners. We're making that movie, but any checks are welcome.
Anna Thalman: [00:20:38] Robert Frost, struggled with this balance for a long time where he wanted to be a writer couldn't earn enough money or really any money at first writing poetry, but he loved to write and was good at it. His wife's family didn't want him to marry her because he wanted to be an artist and they didn't think he was going to make any money. In fact,
Kent Thalman: [00:20:55] I can relate to that
Anna Thalman: [00:20:56] yeah grandpa,
Kent Thalman: [00:20:57] I'm just kidding. I really love my in-laws
Anna Thalman: [00:20:59] her grandpa gave him [00:21:00] a deal that was if I pay for you guys to live for one year, while you pursue this writing thing, then either you make the money back and. You can do this, or you swear it off for the rest of your life And he said, it's going to take me 10 years to become a good writer. And he refused. He refused that opportunity. And it did actually, it was self fulfilling. Prophecy took him almost exactly 10 years to really start making it as a writer. In that time he was providing for his family by doing farming, which he said he was no good at. it was a way to pay the bills and he, wrestled with that he put his heart into that he struggled with farming and spent the majority of his time farming and just filled in the cracks, writing poetry. But I'm sure he was thinking about it while he worked. that is the beauty of his poems is. Capturing this domestic life and capturing the beauty of where he lived the struggles that he was experiencing internally with wanting to do something, wanting to be accepted or seen, and he faced a lot of tragedies in his life. my point is that he did balance film. not film [00:22:00]
Kent Thalman: [00:22:00] Fascinating. I didn't know this about Robert.
Anna Thalman: [00:22:01] He did balance family poetry
Kent Thalman: [00:22:03] and farming
Anna Thalman: [00:22:04] and farming. he was a great teacher and a lot of times people wanted him to teach.
Kent Thalman: [00:22:08] He swapped all these things and he came in and out of a lot of them, but, the poetry is that amalgamation of them, all,
Anna Thalman: [00:22:13] it just stuck through all of it. He couldn't let it go. it's what he's famous for now. But his life was really a mix of things that all informed.
Kent Thalman: [00:22:20] would he be Robert Frost if he didn't farm? he didn't like it.
Anna Thalman: [00:22:22] Right. What would his poems be about?
Kent Thalman: [00:22:24] Yeah, if all he did was just have a successful poetry career from the age of
Anna Thalman: [00:22:28] And he just went to England right away and joined all of the writers over there.
Kent Thalman: [00:22:32] It reminds me of the movie. Brightstar about Keats, the poet and his friend says don't disturb us while we're walking. And thinking, it seems like we're doing nothing. We are musing trying to receive inspiration. isn't that the worst idea of poetry you've ever heard? I'm just going to walk around shut the world out and then get inspired. That's the worst way to get inspired. I feel like I'm not going to have no life. I'm just going to think and just kind of see what comes to me.
I'm going to sit and do nothing and wait for inspiration. Strikes.
Anna Thalman: [00:22:57] I mean most great Thinkers were walkers.
Kent Thalman: [00:22:58] Well, they walked. No, [00:23:00] absolutely. I'm just saying often they had. Romances and successes and failures in relationships and children and, a full breadth of experiences in their lives. They didn't just stay in this wood and look at bark and write poetry about it. they didn't bury all the talents, but one, and do that thing. That's not where the greatness came from. It came from the balancing act of all the things. Coming together, I think, not abandoning any of the priorities or maybe trying to at some times and seasons of their lives and just dealing with that balancing act as Dr. Seuss calls it, hopefully that wasn't too ranty, but man, I feel like we've covered all the big things we care about in this podcast of film and family. that was good stuff. Thanks for creating that horribly titled podcast episode.
Thanks for joining us Anna Thalman: [00:23:45] on the twisty turny ride and. as always the best compliment you can give us if you like, what you're hearing is a referral or a five star review.
if you're struggling to find this balance for yourself or struggling with feelings that, you shouldn't, or they should be doing [00:24:00] something differently. I'd love to help you with that in the film and family program. If you visit invisible mansion.com forward slash film and family, you can find out how to get in contact with me to learn more about this program and see if it's a good fit for you and your own goals.
Kent Thalman: [00:24:13] Awesome. Thanks so much.
Anna Thalman: [00:24:14] All right, bye.