Genesis 18: 1-15 

Psalm 15 

Colossians 1: 21-28 

St. Luke 10: 38-42 


Grace and Peace to you my brothers and sisters in Christ, Amen. 

As a child, there was a humorous church song I grew up  loving. The song goes as such, 

[Verse 1] 

A certain man held a feast 

On his fine estate in town. 

He laid a festive table, 

He wore a wedding gown, 

He sent out invitations 

To his neighbors far and wide, 

But when the meal was ready 

Each of them replied: 


I cannot come, 

I cannot come to the banquet, Don’t trouble me now, 

I have married a wife, 

I have bought me a cow, 

I have fields and commitments, That cost a pretty sum, 

Pray hold me excused 

I cannot come. 

[Verse 2] 

The master rose up in anger 

Called his servants by name, said Go into town, fetch the blind and the lame 

Fetch the peasant and the pauper For this I have willed: 

My banquet must be crowded, And my table must be filled. 

[Verse 3] 

When all the poor had assembled There was still room to spare, So the master demanded: 

Go search everywhere. 

Search the highways and the byways, And tell them to come in 

My table must be filled 

Before the banquet can begin. 

[Verse 4] 

Now God has written a lesson For the rest of mankind: 

If we’re slow in responding 

He may leave us behind. 

He’s preparing a banquet 

For that great and glorious day, When the Lord and Master calls us Be certain not to say: 

Now this song is in reference to a parable that Jesus gave in  Luke 14, a man held a great banquet and invited many, but those  invited all gave excuses as to why they could not come such as I 

just bought a field and must see to it, or I just bought five yoke of  oxen and must examine them, or I just married. So the man then  invited everyone else to fill his halls to include the poor and  crippled and homeless for they were more worthy than the ones  who gave excuses. 

Now the point of the parable and this humorous song is to  highlight that we do live busy lives, and then asks does our  business get in the way of us acknowledging God? 

Now this is not in reference to those who are being forced  not to go to church nor those who willfully choose not to go to  church for some mundane reason, but merely in reference to  those whose life is so busy and whose minds are so troubled by  various important issues that they fail to see the truly most  important thing in front of them. 

The man who is hosting the banquet is God and the banquet  itself is salvation, heaven, and all the fruits of the Spirit; a fine  feast indeed. God comes to us presenting an invitation to his  feast, desiring his halls to be filled, thus in the end all are invited,  but not all will accept the invitation. And the ones in this parable  found in Luke are not turning down God’s invitation out of malice  but simple because their minds are preoccupied with other issues.  They are too busy. 

I can imagine a wife who is ragged tire between cleaning the  house and taking care of several young kids or a husband  earnestly and furiously filing taxes feeling his head about to burst  with all the calculations. A man with a camera crew rings the 

doorbell to their home, they answer, and the man congratulates  them on winning an exorbitantly huge sum of many and all they  have to do is sign this legal document acknowledging receipt of  such winnings. Only the wife and husband close the door to the  man and crew. They are too busy for this salesman’s nonsense,  

not realizing that that was not a salesman and they just denied  acceptance of a fortune, for they have a house and kids or taxes  to take care of. Hopefully in such a circumstance the spouse rises  up out of their busy estate and realize what just transpired and  runs to the man and his crew, apologize, and willingly receives  this gracious gift that has no strings attached to it. 

It is this very kind of business that grips Martha in our  Gospel, but the business she experiences is out of love toward  her guest Jesus Christ. I can imagine Mary and Martha getting  everything prepared upon hearing Jesus was coming over, but as  soon as Jesus arrives, Martha, being a good steward of  hospitality, maintained the serving element of being a good host.  Mary on the other hand halted whatever she was doing in  preparation for the coming Lord and decided to give Jesus  company and listened to him. Martha was distracted with much  serving, Mary was distracted with the Word of God. 

I can imagine a guest shows up at a couple’s home and the  husband sits down with the guest in the living room and strikes up  a conversation. The wife on the other hand prepares the dinner  table and gets mad at her husband for not lending a hand and  tells the guest to order her husband to help her with cleaning the  dining room. A not too common spoof I see on family comedy  shows, and always a source of laughter when such tropes pop up. 

I can just imagine the guest saying, “Whereas I’m flattered that  you wish the home to be in tiptop shape for my arrival, I’m already  here.” 

In the military, we call this lacking situational awareness. Say  the President is coming to your base, for colloquial purposes let  us say that is Camp Perry. You, a member of the military, would  obviously want to make sure that the camp is prepared for the  coming President. I can imagine all the forces present in a busy  rush to make sure every nook and cranny is spotless, every rock  in its proper location, and every lightbulb new. When the  President comes, what do you do? You welcome him, you guide  him, you keep him company, etc. You don’t leave him by himself.  And when he enters a room of Soldiers, what’s the expectation?  Do you continue cleaning the room, completely ignoring the  President? No! You go to attention, salute the President, and  arrange yourself to listen to him. You are in the process of  cleaning the barracks and the President walks in, do you keep on  cleaning or do you stop what you are doing and welcome the  President? Situational Awareness would compel you to stop what  you are doing and place your complete focus and respect on the  Commander in Chief. If Private Snuffy was to ignore the President  then he will receive a right talking to by his sergeant later on. 

So if this is the case with the President, the highest ranking  person in America, what about Jesus Christ Himself, who will  forever far outrank any office? Between Mary and Martha, when it  comes to their guest Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, the one  who acted appropriately was Mary. It is very good that Martha  wanted to make sure the house was prepared for Jesus, and in a 

similar manner we should all constantly prepare ourselves for the  coming Lord, but situational awareness would tell you that the  Lord isn’t coming but is already here. You prepare for the coming  Lord, acting like Martha, but as soon as he arrives, you drop what  you are doing and place your complete focus and Jesus, acting  like Mary. 

Another imagery that comes to my mind, something I grew  up with and most families may have also experienced. You are  getting ready to go to church. Everyone in the house is putting on  their best Sunday clothes, prepping their hair, making sure they  smell good, etc. Then whoever is the timekeeper looks at the time  and says to the household that it is time to leave. If we wish to be  at church on time we will go now. One person stops what they are  doing and hurries to the door; hair still unkempt and smelling like  last night’s campfire. Another, desiring to go to church but wants  to be presentable, does not leave the bathroom but instead says  wait up I’m still getting ready. Which one is too busy and anxious  over things that are not necessary, and which one has chosen the  good portion? The messy one is Mary. The one still preparing is  Martha. 

Now the outward motions isn’t the only thing concerned  here, outward business and appearance that is, but the inner  motions should likewise be considered. How many times are we  so busy that our hearts and mind become anxious and troubled  over the cares of the world? So busy that is with things that are  fleeting, that come and will eventually go? How often do we just  stop and reflect on the one and only thing that is not fleeting nor  brings with it anxiety?

Jesus Christ who already died on the cross to forgive us of  our sins comes to us who believe in Him as a source of peace  and comfort and righteousness. Everything else is fleeting, but  this salvation which comes from Christ is constant. Why be  concerned with things that cause you trouble now and tomorrow  will be forgotten? Why not be concerned with things that bring joy  eternal? Ah, but I already have too much on my plate. I have a  new Job and can’t come to communion. I bought a new house  and can’t come to worship. I have mouths to feed and thus can’t  be concerned with adding one more thing to my busy schedule.  Please hold me excused, I cannot come. 

I understand that we all have busy lives, so I’ll end with this:  What’s truly more important, that which comes and go and only  gives you anxiety, or the Lord and Savior who is indeed present  and his bounteous feast, such as communion, that provides all  things good and can never be taken away? 

Let us pray, 


Dear Heavenly Father, as we prepare ourselves for your  coming Son, desiring Him always in our lives, provide us with the  situational awareness to recognize His presence. In your most  holy name we pray; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.

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