Matthew 20: 13 – 14 – ‘But he answered one of them, “Friend, I am not being unfair to you. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? Take your pay and go. I want to give the man who was hired last the same as I gave you.”’
Read through Matthew 20: 1 – 16 for this whole parable. The general gist is that some people were hired to work for the whole day, agreeing to payment of a denarius for their labour. Other people were hired a few hours later, then a few hours after this and so on until some were hired and there was only time for them to work an hour before payment was due.
Each person received a denarius for their labour, whether it was an hour’s work or a day. For those who worked the full day, they anticipated getting more than those who worked an hour. And yet, they initially agreed to work the full day for one denarius.
It is so easy for us to expect that we will receive more perhaps because we’ve put in more hours or achieved more within our allotted working time. When working for someone, it is important to be clear on what our working terms are – our hours, our pay, our responsibilities.
From here, there is no room to begrudge someone else’s fortune if their conditions are perceived as better than hours. We are to work as if for the Lord and integrity comes in working in the agreed upon conditions, no matter what anyone else is receiving.
Financial tip – be clear on payment terms before undertaking a job so that you know where you stand; don’t set yourself up to be dissatisfied if you learn someone else has better terms than what you agreed upon.