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Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying, 2 “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son. 3 And he sent out his slaves to call those who had been invited to the wedding feast, and they were unwilling to come. 4 Again he sent out other slaves saying, ‘Tell those who have been invited, “Behold, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and my fattened livestock are all butchered and everything is ready; come to the wedding feast.”’ 5 But they paid no attention and went their way, one to his own farm, another to his business, 6 and the rest seized his slaves and mistreated them and killed them. 7 But the king was enraged, and he sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire. 8 Then he said to his slaves, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. 9 Go therefore to the main highways, and as many as you find there, invite to the wedding feast.’ 10 Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered together all they found, both evil and good; and the wedding hall was filled with dinner guests. 11 “But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes, 12 and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without wedding clothes?’ And the man was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 14 For many are called, but few are chosen.”
What do you usually wear to a wedding? Have you ever seen anyone wear shorts and a tee-shirt to a wedding? No. How about pajamas? No. It’s common knowledge that those are not generally choices for wedding attire. People only show up to weddings wearing their best. That’s most likely suits for guys and dresses for ladies. We see a similar situation here in this parable that Christ tells the Pharisees. The parable is about a wedding feast that was hosted by a king. He goes out into the country side, to all the highways and byways, and invites everyone who had been sent the initial invitation to the wedding. However, each time that he goes out to call them, they harass, abuse and even murder his servants. Due to their disrespect and disregard towards him, he destroys them and then sets out to invite everyone else who was left on the streets. These were the people who formerly weren’t worthy of being invited. They were more than happy to join the wedding feast because they weren’t expecting to attend. There was only one small requirement: in order to come to the wedding feast and sit in the presence of the king, they had to be dressed appropriately. However, we see that one individual comes dressed in ragged clothes. Due to his inappropriate attire he is actually thrown out, along with those who initially rejected the invitation!
“Fans often confuse their admiration for devotion. They mistake their knowledge of Jesus for intimacy with Jesus. Fans assume their good intentions make up for their apathetic faith. Maybe you’ve already decided you’re a follower and Not a Fan; well, I hope you keep reading, because one of the core symptoms of “fandom” is that fans almost always consider themselves to be followers.”
– Kyle Idleman | not a fan.
“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts…” – 1 Peter 3:15
I recently signed up to do a project for work, but passed up the opportunity to become the project manager instead. I purposely did that because I did not want to take on the stress of managing other people on the team and worry about getting everything done in a timely manner. For a few days it was great, but when I realized tasks were not getting done, I wanted to jump in and take control. I had an urge to make a plan, send out emails, and remind people of their tasks. It was driving me crazy to not be in control! For those of you who don’t know me, I tend to have a “take charge” personality. Some may call it being bossy, but I tend to think that’s a little extreme. All jokes aside, I realize this is a character flaw, and I see it affect my spiritual life as well. How many times have you acted in a way that says, “If I were in charge, I could definitely handle things better than God?” I know I never said those words out loud, but my actions certainly made it seem that way.
1. You pray, but you don’t believe that God will answer.
Science writer David Blatner, says that there are approximately seven quintillion, five hundred quadrillion grains of sand found on all the beaches and deserts on the earth.
The same scientist estimates that there are roughly 70 thousand, million, million, million stars in the observable universe. For those of you, who like me, have no idea what that means – we’ve got multiple stars for every single grain of sand on earth.
The Bible tells us that God calls each star by name. This same God does not allow a single strand of hair to fall from your head without knowing it. Do you believe that God can answer you? Don’t make your big God too small to answer your prayers.
If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer. (Matthew 21:22)
2. You pray selfishly.
You pray for what you want with no thought of God. The truth is that God wants better for you than you want for yourself. Because that’s true, praying for His will to happen is the most advantageous prayer you can pray.
There is a clear line between selfishly trying to use the Lord to get what you want and humbly coming to Him with our needs and struggles. Consider this question honestly: What concerns you more – who Jesus is or what He can do for you? Knowing Him must be our ultimate goal. When He becomes the desire of our heart, our prayers come in line with His best for us, and they are answered.
Or when you ask, you do not receive because the reason you ask is wrong. You want things so you can use them for your own pleasures. (James 4:3)