Peter was writing to a group of Christians who were suffering. He told them to be fully prepared to endure suffering and persecution for the name of Jesus Christ. He urged them to not repay evil with evil but instead to bless others. He urged the elders among them to shepherd the flock well, and to do so willingly.
And he also urged the Christians to use whatever gift God gave them to serve one another. “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies–in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” (1 Peter 4:10-11 ESV).
Jesus told the parable of the talents, where the master gave each servant a number of talents according to his ability. In the end, the one who buried the talent in order to preserve it for his master was called a “wicked and lazy servant” by the master. God does not want us to squander our gifts. Both Jesus and Peter are clear that we are to use our God-given gifts to serve others. We need to put them to work to produce fruit for the kingdom.
When we use our gifts to serve others, they are blessed and we are offering hope and light.