So, you know I like the stories in scripture. In the gospel of Luke Jesus is going to eat at the home of a Pharisee. Now most of us were raised to think that the Scribes and the Pharisees were worse than sinners and tax collectors and the lame. But, here he was going to eat at this Pharisee’s home.
And it was not a surprise that he told some stories while he was there. He was always telling stories. Sometimes people listened, sometimes they didn’t.
One of the stories he told in this instance was The Parable of the Great Banquet: There was a man who prepared to give a wonderful banquet. He sent his servants out to invite people to come for this great party. But, Jesus said, “they all alike began to make excuses.” And the excuses were pretty good ones. (I mean, we all know about good excuses!)
And after the man heard all the excuses he told his servants to go out to invite folks he wouldn’t normally invite to his home. And, I’d bet those folks all really enjoyed that party! But the people who were first invited, who thought they were entitled to be invited but made excuses, didn’t get to share the fun.
We make excuses at times when it comes to sharing time at church. I went on-line and typed in "excuses for missing worship" and you wouldn’t believe how many sites there were. So, obviously I’m not the only one who has observed this trend to make excuses.
There are times when we do need to miss worship and fellowship in the church. When we are sick, we shouldn’t “share the germs.” When we have family gatherings or are out of town, it’s understandable to miss worship.
But look at some of these:
God told me I needed to stay home this Sunday for some reason (this
one is great, who can dispute God???)
The music is too loud/slow/fast/old/new/contemporary
They are having a guest speaker
It’s full of hypocrites (really???)
There are too many old people
They cater to the young people and children too much
It’s too cold/hot/rainy/dry
The preacher preaches too long
And my all time favorite:
I didn’t want to have to dress up
Now, there are LOTS of others, and I may share some of them with you in the months to come. But I’m now at the point of my article (it’s about time, right?)
You don’t have to dress up on February 1 to come to worship. It’s “Couch Potato Sunday.” Come in your sweats, your pajamas (if you dare), or your comfy clothes. We’ll still worship. We’ll share in the excitement of praising our God together. And then we’ll even have the chance to share a meal together, so you don’t have to cook! We’re having a potato feed following worship. And the toppings will be out of this world.
So, don’t make excuses about coming to share in worship with our church family. Come to the party and enjoy it with us! (And plan to share with us other days, too.)