Sometimes we look at people around us and come to the conclusion that God must be blessing them more than he blesses us. Sometimes we decided we’re more blessed than those we’re observing. At first glance, this seems unjust, unfair.
Except that God isn’t unjust.
How can a just God bless people differently? Why do some people never seem to catch a break, while others seem to blissfully float through life? Why do some people have trial after trial happen to them while others seem to have it easy? God must have a funny definition of justice.
Except that we’re human. We are the ones with a funny idea of justice. God’s not bound to our definitions. God’s not bound to limit how he blesses some people, or increase how he blesses others. And not all blessings are visible to the naked eye. Sure, this guy may make six figures, live in a huge house, and drive one of several nice cars. But that doesn’t guarantee he’s happy. And this other lady may live out on the street with only a cardboard box and a stolen shopping cart as her only possessions, but how can we say she’s unhappy? Some people actually do choose that lifestyle over one of wealth.
Remember the parable about the man who hired people to work in his vineyard? He hired the first people for a day’s wage. Through the day he kept going back to the marketplace (which back then served as the unemployment office) and hiring people to work in the vineyard. At the end of the day he started paying his workers. The ones he’d hired last received a full day’s wage. Those who had worked all day long then expected to get even more, and when they didn’t, were upset. But the man’s response was that they had hired on expecting a certain wage, and he was paying it. He couldn’t be accused for being generous to the ones who had worked fewer hours, because it was his money to do with as the pleased.
We don’t want to be like the men in the parable who grumbled because the owner was generous to those who came in later. We want to be thankful that God has done what he promised. If we follow Jesus and do his commandments, we will find life. The rest is just gravy.
Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.