Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Cycle A
Reflecting on Isaiah 55:6-9, Matthew 20:1-16a
I’m quitting. We’re all quitting. You’d quit too if you worked all day in that blazing sun, pulling those weeds and trying to plant crops in that hard ground. All day long I worked! I was one of the first ones there this morning. I got on the truck and ate the tortilla Maria made for me while they drove us out to the fields. I didn’t stop until lunch. And you know how hot it’s been. But I worked in that heat all day, and all day long the laborers kept coming.
And they got paid first! When I saw what they got I thought he must have upped the pay scale, but no, he paid me just what he promised.
But it’s not fair that the workers who came late, all the way up until 5 in the afternoon, got paid the very same thing I did! If that’s the way it works then from now on I’m showing up at the end of the day too.
“Are you envious because I’m generous?” he asked us when we complained. Well, I can tell you that his ways are not the ways of doing business! And his thoughts are not the thoughts of somebody who wants to keep his workers working hard for him!
I’m mad. I’m frustrated. But I’ve been thinking about all the things God has given me in my life that I didn’t earn. I want to get to know this guy better, whose ways are not my ways and whose thoughts are not my thoughts.
Name some of the things you have received from God that you didn’t earn.
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I have come to light a fire on the earth; how I wish it were already burning (Lk.12:49).
The fact that I was born.
And I’m still alive.
That fact alone of the awareness that I received things from God that I did not earn – – -what a gift!
….I know this scripture passage is not a template for an economic structure but it is an indispensable posture of the heart for a Christian Manager/CEO/Supervisor/etc.
The Bible and Friendship with Jesus. What a gift to be able to commune with him and talk with him. And the Bible to guide my thoughts and heart. And the forgiveness that comes from the cross of Christ. That is what I am most thankful for, is that I don’t have to die a horrific death for my sins and that Jesus took my place because He loves me. He has truely given so much and asks so little in return. Who am I to complain when it seems that I am laboring harder than another. When it all boils down, I have received all I need and I should be thankful that God is filling up other’s plates with all they need.
My mother’s voice rings out in my memory when those word come up “It’s not fiar, who ever said life was fair?” Only now that I’m older do I see blessings in the unfair and the fair. They are what has formed me and to some degree I see God’s hand in those hard times so I can grow stronger in faith. So my crosses are my unearned gifts.
Where do I begin? It is everything the God gives me that I haven’t earned. Sometimes all I have to do is ask God but even when I don’t talk to God He gives blessings. We just have to stop and smell the roses and get out of Gods way. Thankfulness is important.