(Sunday, September 21, 2014)
Gospel: Mt. 20: 1-16 The Workers In The Vineyard.
“The last will be first, and the first will be last.”
One of God’s paradoxical narrative — people getting a lot of “moolah” for doing little, and slackers being paid for doing nothing. People who have accomplished a day’s work, are compensated the same rate as those who haven’t accomplished anything.
Those who turned up and answered His invitation to go to the heavenly kingdom all get the same unmerited reward. We may not fully grasp God’s actions, but this Gospel is a booming underpinning of GOD’S GENEROSITY — His ENDLESS MERCY and His LOVE THAT SAVES. We may sweat a lot more, provide more effort or give extra hours compared to others, but in His eyes everyone will be equally favored, everyone will be “in.”
In this instance we may declare that God’s blessing is extreme, questionable and unfair, but there is an unspoken communication being delivered here — His cause orientation towards the poor, the outcasts, the underprivileged, the downtrodden and the powerless. We are reminded to be like Him — generous in our words and in our deeds, and to LIVE GOD’S AMAZING GRACE by helping the least of our brothers and sisters.
A COMMUNICATION PITCH
This Sunday’s gospel is also a communication pitch to our final destination — HEAVEN. It’s very much like selling a visit to Disneyland – although some may dislike the parallel between a “sacred eternity” and a noisy, crowded, dizzying amusement park – it allows us to savor the promise of heaven and why we should not miss the gratifying trip to it. WE CAN BE FIRST OR LAST IN LINE, but the important thing is we will be allowed to enter. And if a communications brief to project its advantages and uniqueness has to be written, the document will read something like this. It may not be perfect, but it can be a starter.
• PRODUCT: Heaven
• POSITIONING: A dynamic place for limitless joy, love and peace.
• TARGET PUBLICS: All people in the world – believers, non-believers, and converts from all socio-economic strata
• COMMUNICATIONS OBJECTIVES: To strengthen awareness, reinforce preference, and heighten desire for heaven
• CONUMER PROMISE: Life everlasting, life with family and friends, life without suffering, and a life of a super-being in a super world. All these can be had if we would be consistently good and generous to our fellowmen. Heaven is no place for arguments and grudges. It will be a paradise filled with love, joy and peace.
• REASON TO BELIEVE: Our unassailable faith
• TONALITY: Joyful
• PERSONALITY: A welcoming Father. Extremely happy to see His children
• METRICS: The number of people who heeds His call and are able to get in.
Dear Lord, make us truly generous so we may earn a place in your kingdom. May our offerings be given freely and out of pure love. and with no expectations. Lead us to a life of purpose…a life focused in sharing of ourselves, what we have, and what we will continue to have.