Luke 14: 16-24

The lesson I am learning today:  Sometimes any choice is no choice at all.

“A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’

18 “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’

19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’

20 “Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’

21 “The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’

22 “ ‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’

23 “Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full. 24 I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’ ”  (Luke 14)

By His Grace

That Fully Peculiar Sadness

I perceived a sadness within me.  Did it belong to me? 

A cursory search of my soul says no, this sadness does not belong to me.  Joy belongs to me, for it is given to me by the Holy One of God.

Then to whom does this sadness belong?  Doesn’t it belong to those who do not believe?  Yes to those who don’t believe.

My soul stands at the door of heaven and looks back.  I don’t see an excited horde rushing toward the door of Christ.  I see all men milling about with frantic enthusiasm for everything that is futile.

The sadness I am feeling is that, Man is not sad at all.  Like condemned men who stand against the wall of a firing squad, yet celebrate the place where they stand.  Mindless and blind as to what comes next, they busy themselves with an obvious joy.

We can only speak of what we have been told.  He who receives receives, he who does not receive is the source of my sadness.

So be it.  God is first in Christ.  It is to him I owe allegiance.  This sadness will not consume me, even as a foolish enjoy consumes all men around me.

By His Grace

Sitting to be Sent

There was a day when men would seek out those who “knew”.  At their feet they would listen intently.  Even if they could not believe, they believed in that “something More”.

Is that day like today?  Everyone is forced to say no.

The worldly mind praises the accomplishments of Man.  The religious man praises the accomplishments of god-ward thoughts and traditions.  The sinner praises his bold rebellion.  But who seeks the fullness of God within His Holy Christ?

Many have come.  Many have returned to the world.  Who remains?  Who seeks to become the intent of God?  Who sits at the feet of those who know?  Who remains in belief and listens intently?

What have we learned, in regard to this world?  Yet what have we desired to learn of the things of Heaven?

God knows those who are His.  His eye is intently set on their souls.  God is not like limited man.  God sees with penetrating understanding; what man can conceal from man cannot be concealed from God.  You may fool me for a while, but the Spirit of God quickly points to the truth we can expect from those who belong to Him.

7Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God.  You will always harvest what you plant.  8 Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature.  But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit.” (Galatians 6, the living translation)  There will be a noticeable DIFFERENCE.

Isn’t the door of understanding from the Living God’s Christ wide open?  Who is willing to enter?  Who will bend their will toward all that is Holy?  Those who do so will be sent.

Isn’t the world in dire need of truth?   Who will “go”, that they may be sent?