Third Week of Advent: Tuesday
Reading: Matthew 21:28-32
Jesus said to the chief priests and elders of the people, ‘What is your opinion? A man had two sons. He went and said to the first, “My boy, you go and work in the vineyard today.” He answered, “I will not go,” but afterwards thought better of it and went. The man then went and said the same thing to the second who answered, “Certainly, sir,” but did not go. Which of these did the father’s will?’ ‘The first’ they said. Jesus said to them, ‘I tell you solemnly, tax collectors and prostitutes are making their way into the kingdom of God before you. For John came to you, a pattern of true righteousness, but you did not believe him, and yet the tax collectors and prostitutes did. Even after seeing that, you refused to think better of it and believe him.’
Once again, Jesus uses examples from daily life to highlight his message. A father approaches his sons and graciously asks for their co-operation in the care of their inheritance. The first gives an ungracious response that may resonate with one that some of us may have given to parents or authority figures when asked to do something. On reflection, we have had a change of heart and complied with the request. In other instances, we may have responded like the second son and not honoured the trust placed in us.
Each day God asks us to serve him willingly and graciously. Our response will determine the destination of our souls. We may choose to join the chief priests and elders; however, the tax collectors and prostitutes who have listened to the call of the Lord wait to welcome us into our home with God.