Now when those hired first came, they thought they would receive more, but each of them also received a denarius. And on receiving it they grumbled at the master of the house, saying, “These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.” But he replied to one of them, “Friend, I am doing you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this last worker as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?” So the last will be first, and the first last. (Matthew 20:10-16 ESV)
Taking inventory of what other people have is a killer of contentment because someone else will always have more. In my opinion, coveting is agreeing with the devil that God has not given you enough. What is the root of this insecurity if you are trusting the Lord to provide your needs?
If the issue is about earning a fair wage, then negotiating a salary should be done first prior to accepting a job. If a man agrees to the wage, then he is bound to the terms of employment that he accepted. His duty is now to perform his best work and support his employer.
This is not to say inequitable pay practices do not exist, but every person is responsible for doing his own research and asking detailed questions before taking on a job. The interview is meant to be a two-way dialogue; a manager interviews the candidate, and the candidate interviews the manager. What do you want to know about the employer, the business, and work culture? Do their answers appeal to you, and do you think it would be a good fit?
Ideally, mutual agreements are to be honored because they help foster a healthy work environment. In my experience, the Lord has always took care of me as long as my heart was in the right place with regards to work. He also guided me towards another opportunity whenever I sensed that it was time to move on.
As long as he keeps me working, then I will take measures to avoid begrudging a salary rate. Seldom does anyone think that God is the One who authorizes the wage assignment, but it’s true. If he wants a business to thrive, then he will make sure it happens. And if he wants me to prosper, then he will see that I am cared for.
Melody Beattie wrote, “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more.” It is a nice reminder that I can always be thankful because things could be a lot worse. In fact, I might be living someone else’s dream. So whatever I have, God will teach me how to live below my means. And when I include him in my budget planning, then it becomes an act of worship.