We had a wonderful Vestry retreat this past weekend, at the Claggett Center in Adamstown, Maryland. There were 11 of us (4 had to stay home, but they joined us via Zoom). We enjoyed prayer and fellowship, teaching and engaging, discerning conversation, and R&R. During our closing Mass, I shared a few thoughts on the gospel, the parable of the laborers of the “eleventh hour”, who get paid as much as those who labored all day. I share some of these thoughts with you.
There is an aspect of this parable, most encouraging, for those of us who arrive late—which, in one way or another, to one degree or another, is all of us! We are all paid the same thing: God’s unconditional, immeasurable gift of Himself. This same God also makes wonderful use of our labor—whether we are early or late. Think about the fact that we all meet and receive Christ in the Eucharist, no matter where we may be.
We are indeed all late in different ways: late to discovering Christ on the timeline of our life, late to awakening to His presence on any particular day because lost in our heads, late to calling upon Him because worry has overtaken us, late to being an instrument of His love for an-other because we are afraid of the other, later to the Vestry, late literally to Church, late in so many ways. Our lateness is not an impediment to Christ filling us with Himself and reigning in us and working through us. We simply need to say “yes” wherever we are.
If Christ loves us so unconditionally and immeasurably, pursues us with relentless tenderness, will meet us in any circumstances, wants nothing than for us to rest upon His breast like John at the Last Supper, then how can there not always be, at least, some measure of joy in our lives?
In the joy of God, with you,
From the desk of the Rector