One of the stories I love to tell my kids (while they still like stories), is the Little Red Hen. And I think I'll sum it up for ya'll right now: There was once a little red hen who found a wheat seed, and she asked her neighbors the dog, cat, cow, and others if they would help her to plant it. Not a one said they would, and so she broke the ground, plowed it, and planted the seed. As the seed grew, she asked her neighbors, and not a one agreed to help tend the field. When it came time for harvest, she asked her neighbors who would help her with the harvest and in grinding the wheat in to meal; not a one volunteered, and all said they were too busy. So she ground the wheat into flour, and began to make a dough, asking her neighbors who would help her bake the bread; each one was too busy, and declined. When the bread came out of the oven, what a smell! It was delicious, fresh baked bread scent filled the farm! All the neighbors came over to congratulate the Little Red Hen on her harvest, and wondered if they could have a bite of her bread. She politely informed them that she was too busy for company, and proceeded to eat the bread she had harvested from the seed she planted. How often is this how the church operates? We come and only desire to consume the harvest and reap its benefits, but don't wish to do the work to get to the end. It does not matter when you enter the harvest, the work needs to be done, and the wages are the same for all who enter in to the Master's Service (See below). Jesus asks: 10 After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go. 2 And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. (Luke 10) This should be our desire and great labor, to ask the Lord of the Harvest to send workers, to cry alongside Isaiah, saying "Here am I, send me!" Church, let's get back to the Harvest. There are so many who are lost and are going to hell, and it is the Church, the Light of the World, as Jesus calls us, who can bring them to the Master! Get involved in the Harvest! Be the community of believers we see in the Bible!
Matthew 20:1-16 English Standard Version (ESV)
Laborers in the Vineyard
20 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. 2 After agreeing with the laborers for a denarius[a] a day, he sent them into his vineyard.3 And going out about the third hour he saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 4 and to them he said, ‘You go into the vineyard too, and whatever is right I will give you.’ 5 So they went. Going out again about the sixth hour and the ninth hour, he did the same. 6 And about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing. And he said to them, ‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’ 7 They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You go into the vineyard too.’8 And when evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last, up to the first.’ 9 And when those hired about the eleventh hour came, each of them received a denarius. 10 Now when those hired first came, they thought they would receive more, but each of them also received a denarius. 11 And on receiving it they grumbled at the master of the house, 12 saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’ 13 But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? 14 Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this last worker as I give to you. 15 Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?’[b] 16 So the last will be first, and the first last.”
a. Matthew 20:2 A denarius was a day's wage for a laborer
b. Matthew 20:15 Or is your eye bad because I am good?