Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?’” vss. 14-15Matthew 20:8-16
In this delightfully composed parable Jesus describes how the owner of the vineyard pays the same daily wage to all the workers that he had hired, whether they had worked twelve hours or one. As we might expect, even though all had initially agreed to the wage, there was a mighty protest from those who had worked all day. In their eyes, it just wasn’t fair! And most of us would say “Amen”! In our world management can’t get away with such blatant inequities. But Jesus isn’t talking about some sort of labor dispute, this parable is all about God’s boundless compassion and steadfast love. But even though we know that, there are still some who think God is being unfair – they really don’t like the idea of equality when it comes to spiritual benefits. The idea that some are getting more or less than they deserve breeds resentment – and it’s a notion that is deep-rooted in our faith communities. In every congregation there is great disparity among members – some are generous, some not so much. And it’s just hard to accept that all have equal status in the eyes of God. What a blessing it is to find a congregation in which no distinctions are made, and all are content with what they receive!
Thought for the Day: What inequalities have I experienced in church?