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.’
Have you ever struggled with laziness?
In Jesus’ parable known as “Laborers in the Vineyard,” the vineyard owner goes out into the streets to hire workers for his farm. He searches for laborers early in the morning, afternoon, 3 O’clock, and 5 O’clock. An interesting thing about the workers he hires is that they were all standing “idle” in the marketplace.
What did Jesus mean by the word “idle”? There are two different ways to interpret it in this passage. First, it could mean that these workers were lazy, therefore they were wasting their time in the marketplace. Second, it could mean that these people were standing around in the marketplace since no one was hiring them for work. They were jobless and aimless.
So, were they idling because they were lazy? Or were they idling because no one was hiring them for work? It could be either or both.
I often hear from our youth group students that they are lazy. They say that they’ve become professional procrastinator wasting their time looking through Youtube channels and watching Netflix all day long. As the workers idled in the marketplace, today’s teenagers often do the same on the cyberspace.
But are they idling because they are lazy or because they haven’t yet discovered their calling from the Master?
From my own experience as a youth pastor, I think the latter is more common than the former. Over the years I’ve realized that young people can be very diligent and productive when they discover something they want to devote their life. Once their calling is understood, they give their heart to accomplish it.
The good news is that God sent His Son to call us to work for his kingdom. In other words, teenagers have glorious callings from the Master. It’s also good news because teenagers can be delivered from idleness if they hear and embrace the heavenly invitation of Jesus. Their lives can be filled with purpose, hope, and productivity.
So, if you want to be set free from idleness and laziness, don’t just fight against the feelings and habits of laziness. But you should seriously consider Jesus’ calling to follow Him. If you do that I have no doubt, you’ll find eternal purpose and daily motivations to live each day with passion in His calling.