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The disciples of John and of the Pharisees were accustomed to fast. People came to Jesus and objected, “Why do the disciples of John and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” Jesus answered them, “Can the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them?”
On Valentine’s Day, 2002, a beautiful young girl named Katie Kilpatrick was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. In 2003, she was diagnosed with an inoperable tumor wrapped around her pulmonary artery. Nonetheless, on January 15th, 2005, at the age of 21, she married her high school sweetheart. Five days later, she died.
To fast or not to fast, that is the question. The Lord answers the question with a question: Would it be proper for people attending a wedding feast to fast? The answer is obviously “No!” In other words, why would you ever go to a wedding and crash the party by looking sad and gloomy?
Ladies and gentlemen: we need to get with the program. We need to start celebrating our life! We need to celebrate the presence of our God! We are his guests and have been invited to dine at his table and participate in his joy. Life is beautiful, regardless of all the difficulties, tragedies, drunks and party poopers that go with it.
Just a few days ago I was speaking to a wonderful friend of mine and somehow or another we got on the subject of gratitude. This good friend of mine has gone through some very tragic loses and so recently spent a few days with some childhood acquaintances. While they were going down memory lane, she recalled how her friend’s father, from his wheelchair, would always respond to the question, “How are you doing?” with the statement, “I’m doing much better than I deserve.” As a child, it didn’t mean much. As an adult, it has meant the world to her.
Words have a way of changing our lives. They can be both beautiful and powerful. Think for a moment of the first time someone said to you, “I love you.” Ladies, do you remember the impact your boyfriend had in your life when he said, “Will you marry me?” Or the impact you had in his life when you said, “Yes.” Think for a moment when your fiancé said, “I do.” These words have stood the test of time because they come from God and were meant to be used! These words change lives forever! No wonder the Son of God is also referred to as The Word! No wonder why God created the World with his Word, for his Word have a way of creating something from nothing.
“The word of God is living and effective, able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart” (Heb 4:12).
How true! How true! Which also means the devil, true to its form, will love to distort the word of God and bombard us with nonsensical and disheartening filthy talk.
The disciples of John heard him say, “This is the lamb of God.” Samuel heard God say, “Samuel, Samuel!” These words forever changed their lives. Once upon a time I heard the Lord say, “Go and baptize in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. And I will be with you till the end of time.”
Obedience, sacrifice and love. Which of these three are most highly favored by God? The answer is: It’s a three way tie. They all go together. Without obedience, there can be no sacrifice. Without sacrifice there can be no love. Jesus sacrificed himself out of obedience to the Father. And he did so not blindly, but lovingly. He did it all out of love.
It is no wonder the Lord constantly refers to weddings whenever he needs to make himself better understood. After all, we all want to be loved, and now we just need to remember that we are doing better than we deserve!