Gospel, Matthew 20:1-16
'Now the kingdom of Heaven is like a landowner going out at daybreak to hire workers for his vineyard.
He made an agreement with the workers for one denarius a day and sent them to his vineyard.
Going out at about the third hour he saw others standing idle in the market place
and said to them, "You go to my vineyard too and I will give you a fair wage."
So they went. At about the sixth hour and again at about the ninth hour, he went out and did the same.
Then at about the eleventh hour he went out and found more men standing around, and he said to them, "Why have you been standing here idle all day?"
"Because no one has hired us," they answered. He said to them, "You go into my vineyard too."
In the evening, the owner of the vineyard said to his bailiff, "Call the workers and pay them their wages, starting with the last arrivals and ending with the first."
So those who were hired at about the eleventh hour came forward and received one denarius each.
When the first came, they expected to get more, but they too received one denarius each.
They took it, but grumbled at the landowner saying,
"The men who came last have done only one hour, and you have treated them the same as us, though we have done a heavy day's work in all the heat."
He answered one of them and said, "My friend, I am not being unjust to you; did we not agree on one denarius?
Take your earnings and go. I choose to pay the lastcomer as much as I pay you.
Have I no right to do what I like with my own? Why should you be envious because I am generous?"
Thus the last will be first, and the first, last.'
(Let us pray.)
Lord, you are indeed a generous God. You fill me everyday with Your bounty and grace. You give me everything I need and more. You suffice me with Your unending love and unconditional care every time I feel empty and weak. You are my strength whenever my knees are shaking and I feel inferior. Whatever I ask, you provide.
I thank You, Lord, because You choose to love us infinitely. Thank You because you continuously provide the food I eat, the air I breathe, the water I gulp, the clothes I wear, the shelter that protects me. Also, aside from these, I want to praise and glorify you for making me feel that I am loved because of the presence of the persons who are close to my heart.
My Master, teach me to see the good side of everything. Remind me that everything I have right now is more than enough for me to survive in this world. Teach me to be contented and to not to be greedy with wealth, prestige, and power. Remind me everyday that these material things are not the real measure of richness but it is the richness of faith, love, and compassion for others. Instill in my mind not to compare myself with others anymore and not to be envious of what others possess. Give me a satisfied heart.
I offer everything I have and I place on Your gracious hands all my plans, concerns, troubles, problems and struggles. Send forth Your Holy Spirit into my heart so that others may see You in me.
All these I pray through Your son, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You, and with the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.