In yesterday’s Gospel passage, Peter asked Jesus, “We have left everything to follow you, what then is there for us?” and in response, Jesus gave us today the parable of the Landowner. God is like a land owner who recruits us people every day to carry out one task or another in his vineyard.
As Saint Paul would say in 1st Corinthians 3:6-9: “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are equal, and each shall receive his wages according to his labour. For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.”
The fact that God decides to choose a person for a particular task in his vineyard does not make that person better than others. It is not even the nature of the task that makes us holier than others.
We are not all gifted the same way, we were not all born the same day, and we did not even come to know God the same day. So we really do not have any reason to boast or see ourselves as better as or more deserving of rewards than others.
Jesus has said it all: “The last will be first, and the first will be last.” The essence of the Christian life is COLLABORATION, not COMPETITION. Each is called to give his or her maximum capacity to achieve the good of all.
We are just like the trees Jotham speaks about in today’s first reading. The trees came for a meeting to select a king from among them. The olive turned down the offer, as it felt its oil was too precious. It refused to give away his talent, same with the fig tree, who felt his fruits were too delicious, the vine tree as well, because of its wonderful wine. Eventually, they had to settle for the bramble tree who seemingly had nothing of value.
We all have great talents which we are known for but when we refuse to deploy our talents, when we hide under the cover of mediocrity, when we are not ready to sacrifice that which is precious inside us for the sake of others, our society suffers.
Can u sing? Then sing for God. Can you talk very well? Then start making speeches for God. Can you write? Then start writing for God. Can you pray for people? Then begin today to use your gift to promote God’s kingdom. Find something to do for God.
Put in your talents to work for the vineyard of God. In serving God however, bear in mind that you are no better than others who may not be as talented as you are. It is not about what am I getting at the end of the day.
Let it not be that on the last day, some persons would tell God they don’t feel like staying in heaven simply because they are getting the same reward as those who repented only at the last hour. No matter how holy we are right now, the truth is that all of us humans are equal before God.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, use me till there is nothing left. Amen.
Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Wednesday of the Twentieth week in Ordinary Time. Bible Study Judges 9:6-15 and Matthew 20:1-16).