Remember the invitation that got you so excited? Maybe it was to a dance? Or to an event to meet a famous person? Maybe it was a dream come true moment, some place you had wanted to visit or see for a long time. Jesus tells this parable (Luke 14) about a great banquet and the people initially invited all end up making excuses not to attend-at the last minute! The host (who is God) wants the banquet filled and tells the servant to go and bring in the blind, the lame, the poor. Everyone is wanted at God’s banquet.
What does it mean to you to say “yes” to God? There may a significant moment when we first say “yes” to faith or make a commitment to follow Christ. Yet there are many other times when we must decisively choose to follow God’s ways, to live as disciples with faithfulness and integrity, to be people who serve and do what God has asked. Some of us are surprised by the invitation God sends to us. We may miss it. We may be too busy or distracted. We may be unsure if living a deep commitment of faith is really for us and all that can mean. But God wants us, every one of us. God offers us a rich life of faith, a way to satisfy our deepest hungers.
What I also love about this parable is its great inclusiveness. God wants all to come to the banquet. God looks for those who are often left out of the comforts and concerns of this world and brings them in to the great feast of love. I don’t want any of us to miss out on what God is offering. This Sunday, come taste the goodness of God as we worship and get a foretaste, an appetizer of the great banquet ahead for us, a feast of God’s grace and love, and a great welcome for us.