Laborers in the vineyard

The Christian Science Monitor

By the time my brothers and I were old enough to read Jesus' parable of the laborers in the vineyard, See Matt. 20:1–16. we knew that if the Lord were hiring in our neighborhood, Dad would sign us up for the early morning shift!

There was no clear line between work and religion for our father. Cutting the lawn, raking leaves, running a paper route, doing schoolwork after dinner and on weekends, digging ditches as a summer job—there was always work to be done. And not just because it was good for us. It was to be done for the glory and honor of God. We were taught that working hard would bless us.

Today I often give thanks that so staunch a work ethic was such an important lesson in our home. Such character as it developed has stood by me well in many of life's struggles. But I came to realize that I had also adopted a feeling of superiority over those who did not work, at least as my father defined work.

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Gray and green
January 16, 1989

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