Who Am I?

Chester Droog

READ : Matthew 21:28-32

This parable bothers me. I almost wish Jesus hadn’t told it. You see my problem is that I’m unhappy with both sons. The response of the first son breaks my heart as he shouts at his father: “I will not!” What defiance! How can I condone it? How grateful I am that he changed his mind and went into the vineyard. The response of the second son is more like what I would hope would be the response of all of God’s children. “I go.” Praise God, what obedience. But then he didn’t go. How sad. I can hardly recommend either as a model for my grandchildren. Would it not be a happier story if both had said, “I go” and had gone?

But maybe the greater reason I find this story disturbing is that I am both sons. I think of those times when I have said, “I go” but for various reasons, and with all kinds of excuses, have not followed through with my good intentions. I am not the person God wants me to be; I am not even the person I want to be. And then there are those times when I have said, “I will not” but in my saner mo- ments, I realize that I am wrong, I am selfish and I say I am sorry and recommit myself to be a better husband, father or friend. How grateful I can be that God loves me and forgives me no matter which son I am.

PRAYER

Thank You, God, for making me Your son, even though I often fail You. Through Jesus the Christ. Amen.