Dabblers and Despair l Luke 13:18-35 l Chapel Hill Church Gig Harbor
A week ago, Cyndi and I celebrated our 34th wedding anniversary. Wow, did I marry over my head! What a gift that woman has been to me…and to this church, by the way! To celebrate, we pulled out the old, grainy video tape of our wedding and watched it together. It was a poignant trip down memory lane. We saw a lot of people who were dear to us and who have now gone on to be with the Lord.
One of those was my dad’s mom, Grandma Peachy. One of the most vivid memories of Grandma Peachy, from my earliest years, was when we’d walk up to her front door, ring the bell…the door would fly open, she would lean down and say, with great gusto, “Come in this house! Come in this house!” Every visit to Peachy started with the same greeting: Come in this house!
In this morning’s text, as we continue our journey through Luke, we find people pounding on someone’s front door…and getting a very different response!
[Jesus] went on his way through towns and villages, teaching and journeying toward Jerusalem. And someone said to him, “Lord, will those who are saved be few?” And he said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. When once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, I do not know where you come from.’ Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ But he will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart from me, all you workers of evil!’ In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out. And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God. And behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.” Luke 13:32 ff
Let’s start this morning with an odd question: how satisfied are you with the United States of America? A recent Gallup Poll asked that question. An astounding 81% of respondents said they were not satisfied with the United States. Surprised? Maybe not. This country we love is going through a hard stretch, isn’t it? The two leading presidential candidates are both sitting under legal clouds. Only 7% of us have a great deal of confidence in Congress. We seem unable or unwilling to deal with the major issues like crime, inflation, debt, national security…while we are obsessed with out-“woking” one another in divisive ideological wars. It is embarrassing…and it reveals a longing in most of us for something more. Can’t we do better than this?