This week’s gospel reading touches on the continuation of the parable of the vineyard. Jesus who is the father figure in the reading shows two scenarios where one of the son is reluctant to go and work but still goes in the end. The other son says that he wants to go and work but does not go in the end. Everyday, we are called to make choices; some easy and some difficult ones that have to be carefully considered.
The chief priests and elders knew the correct answer when they pointed out that the son who did go and work in the vineyard, despite some reluctance, did the father’s will. Jesus said to them, “Amen, I say to you, tax collectors and prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God before you.” (Matthew 21:28-32). Though we are unprepared at times, Jesus still calls us to work with him in his vineyard and he is waiting for us patiently. Our choices and decisions will affect whether we choose to follow Jesus or not.
Jesus looks past our imperfections and treats both the sons in the parable with equality but the question is, “What will our response be when Jesus calls us?” All Jesus asks us is to do our fair share of work in building the kingdom of God and to evangelize the good news to people in our own small way. It can be a simple act of kindness, lending a listening ear or helping others that Jesus calls us to do, but these can be easily ignored.
It also brings about another topic of “How to be a good son?” Due to my busy schedule at school, I feel that I have not been a good son as I spend less time with my family now and do not even have the time to help around the house anymore. Also, due to frustrations and anger at the situation, I have disobeyed those around me and yet have to try and find time to accommodate them. I find it hard to keep the promises that I have made with people but I am still trying to fulfill them with the time that I have.
At the catholic society meeting this week, we were invited to invite Jesus’s into our hearts and also share the times when we had that special encounter where Jesus was present in our lives and had impacted us. I feel that Jesus has been there always in my life but sometimes I push him aside when things are going all right. We all need Jesus in our lives and the change to answer Jesus’s calling starts from within which is in our hearts.
Our hearts are the focal point when Jesus knocks to enter. Jesus is patient and waits for us as he knows the pain, rejection and stress in life that we are going through. Jesus gives us the choice to open our hearts to him so that he can enter and see us for who we truly are. I went to a vineyard in Australia previously and it was one of the places where the flowers were in bloom and it was one of the most peaceful places that I have been to admire the flowers and just be free. I picture the Kingdom of God to that effect also where there is just everlasting peace and joy to be felt.
The choices in life that we make are daunting and may not be easy but Jesus is always there for us, prompting us to let him and the Holy Spirit take over our tired minds and bodies so that we can get the rest we need. But our hearts must be willing to accept Jesus and to do God’s will in our lives. May we pray that we have the choice that we make in our lives to always know that Jesus is just a prayer away.
I would like to end this post with the song “Broken Vessels (Amazing Grace)” by Hillsong Worship to know that with Jesus, everything is possible.
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost
But now I’m found
Was blind but now I see
Oh I can see it now
Oh I can see the love in Your eyes
Laying yourself down
Raising up the broken to life
You take our failures
You take our weakness
You set Your treasure
In jars of clay
So take this heart, Lord
I’ll be Your vessel
The world to see
Your love in me
God Bless! and that we can open our hearts to invite Jesus to heal our broken body, mind and spirit to continue to do his will today.
Written By: Darren Chan Keng Leong