Fr. Scott’s Corner – Life Isn’t Fair, But God Is
Life is not fair. It is such a simple statement, yet such a difficult truth for many of us to grapple with. Through my work with the young people at Mercy Home, I have come to see that each of us is dealt a certain card from the deck, and we cannot give it back. Instead, we must make the most of the card that has been dealt to us. And, as Christians, we must follow Jesus’s example so that one day we might enter the kingdom.
This thought first occurred to me when I met with some of our boys back in the winter. Several expressed how grateful they were to have a place like Mercy Home—somewhere safe where they can have a good night’s rest, regular meals, and the opportunity to receive a good education. It is quite a contrast from the difficult home lives many come from. They have dealt with abuse, poverty and violence in their communities, and parents who are too caught up in their own struggles to properly care for their children. Yet, despite all of this, these truly challenging cards that our kids have been dealt, they are still seeking a better future. It is up to us, no matter what card we are dealt, to find the right path and follow Jesus.
The Gospel passage from the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time brings to mind how, even when life seems unfair, God puts us on a level playing field. Like God, the landowner in the Gospel treats all the laborers in the vineyard both fairly and generously. The landowner is kind to all his workers, no matter the time of day they began their work. In the same way, it does not matter who follows Jesus first. Rather, what matters is that we follow Jesus’s example with our whole self. We are incredibly fortunate that God treats us so well—even better than we deserve. Even when we fail, he is patient with us. Let us thank God for the generosity and love that is extended to each of us.
“…it does not matter who follows Jesus first. Rather, what matters is that we follow Jesus’s example with our whole self.”
Throughout the month of September, may we all be grateful for God’s generosity to us, which is so great and bountiful that each of us will inherit the kingdom, no matter who comes first to work in the vineyard and follows Jesus’s Gospel message. I pray that we might remain mindful that while each of us has been dealt a different card, Jesus welcomes us all into the kingdom with open arms. I encourage you to have the same welcoming spirit toward others and truly live his example.