Monday, August 17, 2009

When the Good Keeps Us From the Best

Coming off a great Sunday, it's always useful to reflect on what difference - if any - participating in church makes to the every-day reality of Monday-through-Saturday. In fact it's the question that drives the content and discussion in my Sunday-school class (shortly to be re-named) "Practical Christianity."

However, rather than focus on Sunday-school, I'm going to steal from Rebekah's sermon for today's post.

I've probably said this before, but my wife is hands-down the most consistently interesting, engaging, articulate, fun to listen to preacher I've ever heard in 50-plus years of a broad variety of church experiences! Not only that but she packs in a dynamite message at the same time.

This Sunday she talked about the Great Banquet, that parable in Luke 14 where Jesus tells a story about the invitation to show up and enjoy the best party ever. Good stories; spot-on illustrations; passion; enthusiasm - the usual. But then she made the following statement (I'm paraphrasing, because I don't have a transcript of the message):
  • "All those excuses people had for not showing up at the banquet turned out to be good excuses. If I'd been the host I'd have accepted all of them as reasonable reasons for skipping out on a party. They weren't bad excuses at all - and that's the real point of this message. Quite often we allow ourselves to let what is good keep us from experiencing the best... Sometimes the good can be the enemy of the best... It's too easy to settle...."
Brilliant! I can't help but think about this culture, where we live out our day-to-day in between Sundays. We have things fairly easy here in North America, and the "pursuit of happiness" has pretty much taken over from life and liberty as the primary emphasis we take from our Declaration of Independence. I don't know about the rest of you, but I like to be comfortable; I like to be surrounded by stuff that makes my life easier; I like my world to be predictable and easy to manage.

So now I'm thinking about how much of the "good" in my life effectively keeps me from engaging God's best.

Hey, it's Monday morning. So I'll put a lid on it right here. I think that's probably quite enough to chew on for now.

Yeah, Sunday does have that tendency to intrude on the rest of our lives... But only with our permission.

Blessings - DEREK

1 comment:

Janet Frenkel said...

Great message. We always talk about prioritizing but thinking about it this way..."good or God's best" transforms the thinking to a whole new level. Love how you plant seeds that make us question and become better people to serve each other and the Lord. Have a Great Week!