What is Jesus saying to me today?
I ask that question of myself now and then. Most of the time I respond to the question with this thought: Oops, I forgot to listen! But when I do listen, I often hear him say to me what he said to Peter, James and John. “Larry, come and follow me.”
What a great invitation! It’s a wonderful way to start each day—hearing Jesus invite you to follow him through out the day, to go with him where he’s going and to learn from him as you travel along.
Jesus talked about the place he was going all the time. He called it the kingdom of heaven. On one occasion Jesus said the kingdom of heaven is like a great banquet—a big party given by a king.
If you read the story in Luke 14:12-24 you’ll notice some distinctive things about the kingdom of heaven. One, the guest list is unbelievable. Everyone is invited, not just the cool kids. The king doesn’t just invite his friends and relatives, and his rich neighbors; instead, he invites the one’s who are usually left out—people who are typically excluded and don’t have the ability to return the favor.
Here’s another thing about the king’s banquet, there’s always more room. In the story Jesus says the king sends his servants out to the highways and bi-ways to invite more people. Empty seats at the banquet table are not acceptable. The king wants his house to be full of guest. The more, the merrier.
There’s one more thing about the story, it ends with the king being disappointed by the number of people who miss out on the party.
It’s hard to believe but it’s true; everyday Jesus invites us to join him at the party called life and we forget to show up. Sometimes we don’t slow down enough to hear the invitation; other times, we get the invite but we have “more important” things to do. We get so busy making a living we forget to truly live.
In the morning when you wake up, listen for the invitation. Jesus is inviting you to follow him. Send the RSVP before you get out of bed and then get up and follow Jesus to the party God has planned for you.
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Larry Stoess is an author, public speaker, and urban church planter. He loves telling stories about how dreaming with God will empower people to make old and broken things new again. Larry and a band of friends founded the Church of the Promise in Louisville's Portland neighborhood; The Table, a pay-what-you-can community café; and Promise Housing Plus, a non-profit construction company. He has written about their experience of dreaming with God in his new book: Think Red.