“Come as you are”. That’s what the invitation said.
My junior high girlfriends and I thought that was rather funny. What if you were in your pajamas? What if you needed to wash your hair? What if you had a stain on your shirt?
The invitation told us to come as you are. But did the party host really want us to come as we were? We doubted it.
We decided to wear what we would for any party at that time, ages ago. A dress. Which of course meant narrowing that choice further to exactly what kind of dress.
During Jesus’ time on earth he told many parables. One parable he told was about a great banquet.
The host of the banquet issued an invitation. He invited many guests, but when everything was ready and he sent his servants to tell those he invited to come to the party, the invited all made excuses for why they couldn’t attend.
This, of course, angered the host. He’d gone to an awful lot of trouble, and great personal cost, to prepare a magnificent banquet. He wanted his guests to share it with him. Yet, those he invited couldn’t trouble themselves to show up.
The host told his servants to go into the streets and gather up the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame. He invited the street people to come as well.
This later group of people were invited to come as they were. They didn’t need to worry about what they wore. The host would provide garments for them.
God is preparing a great banquet in heaven. He has invited us to join him to celebrate his Son. Although the invitation is for all, some who receive the invitation make excuses for why they can’t come.
Too busy. Too weary. Too wretched. Too whatever.
But God tells us to come as we are. No need to look inside our closet for something decent to wear. The Father will provide the perfect garment. Robes of righteousness, courtesy of the blood of the Lamb of God. Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
Christ paid the price for the invitation to the banquet. He is the reason we receive the invitation in the first place. He removes our filthy rags of unrighteousness and clothes us with his righteousness.
He washes away our stains and filth through his blood that was shed on Calvary.
If we’ve placed our trust in Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross to save us from our sins, we’re on the guest list. Our invitation to the banquet is in the mail, so to speak.
This is a party invitation we don’t want to turn down. It is a party we don’t want to miss. So RSVP with a yes to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, and come as you are. Not as you were.
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Jesus replied with this story: “A man prepared a great feast and sent out many invitations. When the banquet was ready, he sent his servant to tell the guests, ‘Come, the banquet is ready.’ But they all began making excuses. One said, ‘I have just bought a field and must inspect it. Please excuse me.’ Another said, ‘I have just bought five pairs of oxen, and I want to try them out. Please excuse me.’ Another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’
“The servant returned and told his master what they had said. His master was furious and said, ‘Go quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and invite the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ Luke 14:16-21 (NLT)
You can find my November Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.
I wish you well.
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