There are so many things happening in our world right now that need our focus and attention, but I find that we often have way too many excuses. We can't serve because we are too busy, we can't attend because there is so much going on, we ca't pray because we can't stay focused. It's one thing to see a world that is without the hope of Christ in their lives settle for so much lack because of excuses, but it is another thing to see this happening within the household of faith. Excuse after excuse after excuse and I believe the Father is saying enough already!! There is a lesson that Jesus taught in Luke 14 that is called the parable of the Great Supper. In this lesson we see a man of substance who has had prepared a great feast and He has invited many guests to come. The man tells his servants to go out and bid the guests to come in to the supper. One by one the guests begin to give excuses as to why they cannot attend. One has purchased some land and needs to go and look after it. Another has purchased some oxen and needs to put them to the test, while yet another has recently married and apparently this prohibits him from coming. The man is very upset at the report from the servant that all of these fine, upstanding guests that have been invited have more excuses than desire to attend and the man gives the servants new instructions. Go, he tells them, into the streets, into the highways and the bi-ways and bring in the poor, the lost, the downcast and the destitute. Go out and compel them to come, persuade them with all of your persuasive power to come into this house for the feast, the supper is already prepared. Go out and bring them in, so that my house will be filled. And then the man said, those who were invited before but had so many excuses, they will not taste of the supper that I had prepared, but those who will respond, they will be filled.
This story of course is referring to the household of faith, those who have been given access to the table, to the fellowship table with Jesus, but we have often responded with excuses. There is so much work to do, so many people to feed, but I can't because I have my lawn to cut. There are so many little children to be read to at the local school, but I can't because I have to look after the property that I recently purchased. There are so many meals to be served to those who have nothing, but, oh no, I can't because I have to secure the wall around my garden to keep everyone out. EXCUSES!!! Jesus spared nothing when He went to the cross for us, yet we often give Him sad and meaningless excuses as to why we cannot be His hands and feet in the earth.
I tell you beloved that it is time that we as the awesome, powerful, Holy Spirit filled people that we are step up and say, NO MORE EXCUSES! Lord, if You need hands today, here are mine, use me. Lord, if you need a mouth today to pray blessings and hope, here am I use me. Lord, if you need someone to hand out water to those who have been parched by the sun as they stand on the highway exits, here I am, send me. Jesus was the most serving person on earth and He is our example, let's be like Him and offer no excuses. Jesus ends this passage by saying whoever does not take up his cross and follow Him cannot be His disciple. A disciple is disciplined in following the direction of the Master, we say YES, not offer excuses.
The good news is that Jesus knows that we have things that are happening in our lives that we need to take care of, and He wants us to handle those things. But He wants us to put Him first, then trust that all other things will follow and be in order. I am praying that we can make a decision to say, NO MORE EXCUSES when it comes to working for the Kingdom. I am praying that we do not miss out on the great supper that has been prepared because we have too many weak and unimportant excuses. I am praying that we go out and compel others to come in because we have tasted and seen that the Lord is good!! The Master wants His house to be filled, we should want the same.