In the first reading today from Zephaniah 3, we read about “a remnant…a people humble and lowly, who shall take refuge in the name of the Lord…They shall do no wrong and speak no lies; nor shall there be found in the mouths a deceitful tongue…” I wonder, would someone recognize us as being part of that faithful remnant?
In the Gospel reading today from Matthew 21, Jesus tells a story about two sons. The father asks each of them to go work in the vineyard. The first says, “I will not,” but afterward he changed his mind and went to work. The second son says, “Yes, sir,” but he does not go. Jesus asks, “Which of the two did the father’s will?” Of course, the answer is the first son. Even though he said he wouldn’t go, he did.
These two sons paint an interesting picture, one that we may fit into. Perhaps the first felt repentance because of his disobedience to the father. He changed his mind, and thereby changed his actions. The second son may have had perfectly good intentions. Perhaps he got sidetracked. Or maybe he never intended to follow through in the first place. We don’t know. What we do know is that he did not act. He did not do the father’s will, regardless of his intentions. Do we sometimes do the same? Oh, we think about doing the Father’s will, we tell the Father we’re all about doing His will, but when the rubber meets the road, we come up short. Can we do a better job of doing the Father’s will today?
Father, give us the grace and the strength and the fortitude to not just talk about doing your will, but to do your will, today and always. Amen.