Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/092417.cfm
Jesus told his disciples this parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out at dawn to hire laborers for his vineyard. After agreeing with them for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard. Going out about nine o’clock, the landowner saw others standing idle in the marketplace, and he said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard, and I will give you what is just.’ So they went off. And he went out again around noon, and around three o’clock, and did likewise. Going out about five o’clock, the landowner found others standing around, and said to them, ‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’ They answered, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard.’ When it was evening the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Summon the laborers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and ending with the first.’ When those who had started about five o’clock came, each received the usual daily wage. So when the first came, they thought that they would receive more, but each of them also got the usual wage. And on receiving it they grumbled against the landowner, saying, ‘These last ones worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us, who bore the day’s burden and the heat.’ He said to one of them in reply, ‘My friend, I am not cheating you. Did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what is yours and go. What if I wish to give this last one the same as you? Or am I not free to do as I wish with my own money? Are you envious because I am generous?’ Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last.”
How often do we get jealous of someone who comes to faith late in life being extolled or honored for what they have done. We think we deserve these honors because we have been faithful all our lives. Sound familiar? We think we deserve more because we have given more, but we fail to see that Our Lord is so generous that He will give His blessings to all who come to Him, no matter how late in life. Who benefits most by an early and life long conversion? We do, we get our reward by living the life He wants, by the joy and happiness that is ours when we say yes. Do not begrudge anyone God’s blessings. They are free for all – even and especially repentant sinners.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, your blessings are far beyond what I deserve and more than I could ever earn! Thank you for what you have done and are still doing in my life, in Jesus’ holy name, I give you praise, Amen.
The Lord is near to all who call upon him.