Prayer: Father, let me hear your voice. What You are calling me to attend to? When I hear Your Call may I find no excuses but rather may I follow in complete obedience.
Scripture: Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’ “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’ “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’ Luke 14:16-19 NIV
“The dog ate my homework.” How many of you have ever heard this excuse? I actually know someone who has a golden retriever and he did eat her son’s homework along with a bunch of their shoes, furniture and other household items. I also know a teacher whose dog ate her student’s homework that she had taken home to grade. So, it actually happens.
I am sure you have heard you share of excuses for everything from missing homework, to missed school, to sitting out of PE, and everything in between. If you have some fun ones, please share them with one another – but do not share the names of the students that gave the excuse. I hope you will have a good laugh or two for a couple of minutes.
Okay – now back on track. We may have heard some funny excuses but what was your reaction? Did you excuse the homework? Was there a consequence? Was the student held accountable? In your opinion, what is the difference between a good excuse and a poor excuse? Knowing that the dog really did eat my friend’s son’s homework is a legitimate reason but where was the homework that the dog could get to it to eat it? If it had been put away in a safe place there would still be homework to turn in? Who was at fault, the dog or the student?
In today’s Scripture verses Jesus is telling a parable about a man preparing a great banquet and inviting his closest friends. His friends had some pretty lame excuses for not coming; “I have to go see the field I just bought” and “I have to try out my new oxen” were only a couple of the excuses but don’t you think those things could have waited until the next day? This story represents the rejection of Christ’s grace by the Jews, and the man filling his banquet with other “guests,” the Gentiles. There is an eternal loss for those who reject Him, but the greatest gain of all for those of us who accept the invitation to come and join Him eternally. It is not much different today; I still all sorts of excuses from people who do not want to accept Christ as their Savior. I bet you have heard some crazy ones too!
Unfortunately, sometimes we make excuses that can affect others and not just ourselves. God may be calling you do something, lead something, go somewhere, learn something new and you have a hundred excuses why you cannot. We wave our calendars at Him or point to our young children or remind Him of our lacking checkbook balance or say we are too tired or not skilled in that area… the list goes on and on. Are you in this situation right now?
Maybe your school is trying to make some changes, trying some new things or attempting to keep up with the world educationally. What is the response among your staff? Are they gung –ho or full of excuses? Do you leave your staff meetings excited or exhausted? Have you caught yourself listening to other’s excuses and jumping on the bandwagon or do you hold your co-workers to the same standards as your students – no excuses. Who suffers with all of these excuses?
My prayer for you is that you would attend to what God is stretching you to do and that you would not have any excuses.
Copyright Kathy Branzell. Email firstname.lastname@example.org