In Matthew 21:28-32 Jesus shares the parable of a man’s two sons. When asked by his father, the first son refuses the request to go work in the vineyard. Yet, after his impulsive denial, he goes and does the work dutifully. The second son, fails to go as he had agreed – having given an affirmative answer with no intention of obedience.
Which of the Sons Are We?
How many times are we in a similar situation with our Heavenly Father? He asks something of us that we don’t find particularly appealing and our first impulse is to push back – to say, ‘No, I can’t possibly do that!” But, after a bit of discernment and a twinge of conscience, we go and do His bidding.
There are other times, however, when God places a duty (or cross) squarely onto our shoulders. In a reflexive reaction, we answer in the affirmative. Yet when the time comes to follow through, we falter and fail. Our good intentions (we’ve all heard where those lead) fall flat and our lack of effort leads nowhere.
As we mature in both age and faith, it should follow that we become like the best parts of both sons. Saying yes to Our Lord’s requests AND following through!
What is Our Attitude?
There’s another aspect to be considered as well – when we make the choice to obey, do we approach the request with joy or resentment? In either case, the job gets done, but our state of mind greatly influences the value of our obedience.
If we function from the aspect of resentment, our begrudging assent has little value. On the other hand, a joyful and loving obedience reflects the love and care given to us creatures by our beloved Creator.
Today, I pray that this will be my approach – a willing ‘yes’ and a joyful ‘performance of the request. After all, no sacrifice is adequate when measured against the love – to the point of death – we have received from our Risen Lord!