Scripture: He said to him, 'My friend, how is it that you came in here without a wedding garment?' But he was reduced to silence.Then the king said to his attendants, 'Bind his hands and feet, and cast him into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.'Many are invited, but few are chosen." Matthew 22:12-14
Prayer: Each time I read these verses, I sympathize with the friend who accepts the last minute invitation and then is tossed out into the darkness because he is not properly attired. Help to reach a deeper truth.
Response: If it weren’t for the apparent contradictions, you would never remember this parable and would even be less challenged to fathom the teaching contained therein. The brief explanation of this lesson is that there are to be no short cuts. The analysis you can perform in your mind must be matched, even exceeded by a heart recognition of the truth that is reflected in who you are becoming. Don’t think you can get away with defining respect if you are not respectful; the same for compassion without offering your hand to those in need; and for love and not love those who might not know love.
The young man who accepted the invitation demonstrated that he was clue-less, or put another way unconscious to the exalted opportunity given him. Instead of preparing for an appropriate response, he appeared and showed a certain – albeit unconscious – disdain by his apparel to the host and his family. Clearly the king was not going to welcome someone who did not appreciate the special invitation. The good news is that it seems he was only one to commit the act of disrespect.
So you are encouraged in all life encounters to be awake and represent in your actions and appearance the authentic reflection of who you are and becoming. Conscious you will discover untold opportunities to contribute to the celebration and to celebrate, to serve, to respect the host instead of indulging yourself at the food and drink tables.