Living Word: Which Brother are You?

by Adam Setmeyer | Oct 02, 2014

Ginny Smith, School of Mathematics and Sciences administrator

The last two Sundays of September’s gospel readings have been parables that transpired in the vineyard.  The vineyard in these teaching moments is symmetrical to the seasons of a Christian’s life.  A seed is planted in fertile ground, watered by the rain, nourished by the sun, pruned by human hand, blessed with bounty and then shrivel and lay dormant for another season. So too, our Christian lives are grounded in rich soil (the Church/Jesus) and God provides all the tools we need to become bountiful.  Our responsibility is to feed our souls daily with praise to the Father, humility, grace, compassion, patience and more.  Easier said than done – right?

In this past Sunday’s gospel by Matthew (21:28-32), the story is about two brothers who are asked by their father to go into the vineyard and work.  The first brother said “No!”, but later went and did as his father asked.  The 2nd brother said ‘yes of course’, but never completed his father’s bidding.  The question is asked ‘which brother are You’?

So I’m asking you which brother are You? Are you the self -righteous one or the obedient one? Do you let excuses live your life? Are you a hypocrite saying whatever anyone wants to hear, but never showing up?

Are you impatient or critical of others because you think you can do it better or that you are smarter, faster, or prettier than another? Maybe it’s time for you to use the gifts God has blessed you with and I have 2 methods that can help you become more patient, less self-righteous and obedient to God’s will:

  1. Use the sign language for the word ‘patient’! Put your right hand in a fist with the thumb out. Slide your thumb downward across your lips toward your heart.  This sign will remind you to silence your lips, remembering what’s important and that all good things lead to your heart. A beautiful gesture!
  2. You are responsible for your own actions and reactions!  So when life gets frustrating, throw off the bad, the impatient, the self-righteousness, the pity, the anger…by throwing up your hands and saying “praise Jesus”. 
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