28 Sunday in Ordinary Time
MT 22:1-14 OR 22:1-10
October 11, 2020
Brides around the world must certainly appreciate the frustration and bitter disappointment that the king, featured in this Sunday’s parable, experienced. Since March of 2020, long planned (and probably paid for) wedding celebrations have been postponed, dramatically altered, or cancelled altogether. The pandemic has made wedding celebrations hotspots for contagion. So, many couples engaged since Covid hit are stalled in their planning.
For that matter, a wedding invitation from a couple going forward with a public reception leaves many folks, especially those considered “high-risk,” scrambling to think of a credible excuse to include with their regrets.
Arguably, this parable revolves around the final line:
Many are invited, but few are chosen.
Which raises the question about the poor guy, who was most likely shocked to find himself inside the reception in the first place, then totally traumatized as he was tossed out shortly after arriving. Just what was he lacking as far as his apparel that caused him to suffer this brutal treatment?
Today, someone might well be denied entry to a wedding venue for not wearing a mask. But to be bound hand and foot and tossed into the darkness…well, that just screams “lawsuit!” But maybe that’s the key here…a mask!
The Father has prepared a banquet of infinite delights. The cost was heavy…paid willingly by The Son…Who offered His very life so that all might be accommodated. The invitations have gone out, delivered by The Holy Spirit.
Tragically, many ignore the invitation altogether, not even bothering to open it. Some might consider accepting, but then get caught up in other things…distracted…otherwise occupied…making any number of excuses. There are those who realize what an enormous honor it is to be invited. These make every effort to prepare so that they are worthy guests, bringing the gift of “lives well-lived.”
Finally, there are those who unexpectedly find themselves at the doors of the banquet hall. But to gain entry, they need to REMOVE THEIR MASKS. All those things that conceal THE FACE OF CHRIST must be cast off. The dress code is LOVE. Some comply…others, it seems, hold on tenaciously to those things the hide their true identities as children of God.
The Kingdom is a place of perfect peace. Once admitted, there is no need to defend or protect oneself. There is only joy.
So, the question of the week is: WHY WAIT?
There is no reason to delay your plans. Start preparing now…and the doors will be opened to you.