Matthew 20:1-16 Equal
The text this week, is a parable that Jesus tells equating a vineyard to the Kingdom of God. In this story the land owner hires workers from the beginning of the day until the last hour before quitting time. Each one is told that they would get a fair day's wages. At the end of the day, all the workers receive equal pay. The first ones hired that day are furious how dare the land owner pay the later comers the same as them. The land owner responds that it is his money and he can spend it how he wants to period, end of story. The land owner wants to be generous with everybody for all their work.
This story can be hard for many of us American Christians to swallow. We live in a society that hard worker equals pay and more hard work equals even more pay. When I read this story the first time, I thought how unfair it was for the land owner to pay the late workers the same as the early workers, because the early workers did a lot more work. I think the problem that we have living in our society is that we equate work with value. The more work the more valuable of an employee we are. God has a different standard for us. This parable reminds us that everybody is valuable in God's eyes. That the last person, to do work for God is just as important than the first person.
What if we viewed other people like this? What if we saw the same value in them that God has? How would you treat people differently? The week give this a try and see how your relationships are different when you treat each person you meet the same way God treats us, with value.
Pastor Paul. I hope you find these reflections insightful and help you in your faith journey!