Who would you invite to a dinner party with Jesus?
Who would I invite?
Would I pick respectable, well-read, and cool Christians? There would be good conversation about theology and culture. They would talk with Jesus about the latest blogs and books they had read. They could talk about movies and pop culture. Imagine the conversation about the Churches roll in politics and the economy. I think it would be a pretty good time.
Maybe I’d invite the outsider. Some of these folks are socially awkward and off beat. They’re quirky and say more than a few uncomfortable things. Their language is a little coarse. The conversation might be more immediate and concrete rather than abstract and analytical. It might be based on the latest tabloid or reality TV show. Still, it would be a pretty good time.
Here’s how I see it playing out: Jesus shows up, right on time. Some of the other guests were early while we’d still be waiting for others to arrive. Everyone is sitting around talking. Based on the smiles and laughter, it’s going pretty well.
I’m in the kitchen getting some more ice when Jesus walks in. He has this great smile. It exudes joy and contentment. His eyes are full of life. Anyway, he walks up to me and says, “This is a really great party. You really reached out.” Wow! That’s pretty close to “well done my good and faithful servant.” Then he says, “Before you throw your next party, make sure you’re inviting people because you love them not because you want to impress me.”
Truth be told, both lists were meant to impress Jesus. One list was to show him how cool I am. The other list was to show him how compassionate I am. Either way, it was about looking good to Jesus and not really about who came to the party.
The great thing about Jesus is that regardless of my motives, everyone at the party got to meet him. I was the one who missed out. In the Scriptures, Jesus didn’t have a problem hanging out with the Pharisees or ‘sinners.’ He didn’t do it because he would look good to his Father. He did it because he really loved them.
After this little thought exercise I’ve decided to throw a party and invite anyone and everyone that’s interested. In the meantime, I’m going to work on my attitude and learn to enjoy the party.
You’re going to have a dinner party with Jesus as the guest of honor. Who will you invite and why?