Suggested Reading Matthew 20: 6-8; Joel 2:25
Yesterday, I re-read the ‘Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard’ in the 20th chapter of Matthew and it struck me that what the owner of the vineyard did for the workers who were hired late, was that he redeemed their time. Their contemporaries had been diligent, they had come early to find work and had been hired at the right time. These other workers, for whatever reason showed up late – disadvantaged from the start. Unlikely to make much out of the time they had left.
Enter in the owner of the vineyard. “I know you are late” He says to them “but I will give you a job.”
It is almost the close of business. Barely one hour left. But these late workers are delighted. Getting an hour’s wage is better than getting nothing so, they delightfully go in with all their energy and gratitude and they work hard in the vineyard.
At the close of business, rather than give them pay for the one hour they worked, the Master of the vineyard, the One with the resources, pays them a full day’s wage. The same with those who had worked from the start of the day. The Master had redeemed the time they wasted!
Someone reading this today may have been delayed. Maybe as a result of family circumstances, or even because of your own mistakes. You may have entered school late. You may have gotten married late. You may have been delayed in having children. You may have stayed without a job for years while it seemed as though your contemporaries kept getting promoted from one big job to the other. You may, like me, have started your journey to spiritual maturity late and are wondering how you will catch up with all the adventures you long to have with God. Allow today’s scripture bring you comfort. The Master of the Vineyard can restore your time! He is the God who hires at the 11th hour and pays you the same wages as those who worked all day. I must balance this out by saying that this is not a call to being lazy or mediocre or intentionally recalcitrant. No, this is just to point out that there is a possibility in God for your time to be redeemed. You may have come into the game late but your ovation can still be loud! Lean in to the one who has said He will restore to you the years that the locust has eaten.
Lord, I know that in (mention area), I may have started late. But as I commit myself to following you and doing your bidding, please restore to me the time I have wasted as a result of sin, ignorance, poverty or the manipulation of the enemy. Take all the glory Almighty God in Jesus mighty name I have prayed.