Here is Gregory the Great, commenting on Matthew 25:19-24…
“After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them… Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.'”
The third servant was unwilling to work with his talent. He returned to his master with his talent. He returned to his master with words of excuse: “Master, I knew that you are hard man reaping where you have not sown, gathering where you have not scattered; being afraid, I went away and hid your talent in the earth. Here it is; see, you have what is yours.” The useless servant called his master hard, and yet he neglected to serve him for profit. He said that he was afraid to invest the talent for interest, when he should have been afraid only of bringing it back to his master without interest.
For many people in the church resemble that servant.
They are afraid to attempt a better way of life, but not of resting in idleness. When they think about the fact that they are sinners, the prospect of grasping the ways of holiness alarms them, but they feel no fear at remaining in their wickedness. Peter is a good example. When he was still weak, he saw the miracle of the fishes and said, “Depart from me, O Lord, because I am a sinful man.”
If you regard yourself as a sinner, it is only right that you not drive God away from you! But those who see that they are weak and are for this reason unwilling to improve their habits or way of life are like people admitting that they are sinners and at the same time banishing God. They flee him whom they ought to hallow in themselves; even in the agony of death they so not know where to turn and cling to life.
A lot to think about there…