Monday, April 13, 2009
Diverted by Lesser Things
"Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying: 'The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell them to come, but they refused to come.'"1
Julian Aldridge, Jr., tells how "Some years ago, Hollywood produced an exciting film titled, The Bridge on the River Kwai. The setting was during the Second World War in a Japanese Concentration Camp for prisoners of war. One of the prisoners, the Senior British Officer, talked the Japanese into letting the prisoners build a bridge over the River Kwai. The officer realized that it would boost morale, give life some purpose, and engender hope if the men had something to which they were committed each day.
"The work proceeded to the point of conclusion with a bridge that was a substantial piece of engineering skill; in fact, it was such a logistical benefit to the Japanese that the Allies had to send in an expedition force to blow it up. In the movie, there is a dramatic scene when the Senior British Officer, himself a prisoner of the Japanese, suddenly confronts with stark realism the fact that the other prisoners and he had spent all their time and energies building a bridge for the enemy!"2
As Aldridge pointed out, "There is, in the story, a lesson for all time. We, too, often spend our time and energies in pursuit of, or to perfect, the wrong things. This was the situation with those invited to the wedding banquet in the story Jesus told. They had an invitation to the party of a lifetime, and yet, they were diverted by lesser things."2
May God help you and me not to be diverted by lesser things and thereby dissipate our energies and resources in non-essentials. Keeping eternal values in mind, let us make the most important things the most important things—both in the church and in our personal lives. And above all, whatever you do, don't miss Christ's invitation to you—his invitation to attend his "banquet in heaven" to be with him forever. For help see the article, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at: www.actsweb.org/aricles
1. Matthew 22:1-3 (NIV).
2. Rev. Dr. Julian M. Aldridge, Jr., Sermon: "Amazing Grace."
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