As I sat down, Stan handed me an envelope. “What’s this,” I asked.
“An invitation,” he replied. “My wife and I have an anniversary coming up and we’re going to have a dinner party over at The Pleasant Inn.”
“Big group?” I asked.
“Yeah,” Stan said, “we’re inviting a lot of people, neighbors and friends, but I especially want you to be there.”
“You can put me down,” I replied. “I’ll be there.
“Great!” Stan said. “We are asking everyone to let us know if they will be there. It’s a big place so we know there’s plenty of room, but we want to make sure we will have plenty of food, especially dessert. There’s going to be a big wedding cake with lots of ice cream, but we want to have enough for everyone. Even seconds!”
Continuing, he said, “This is a lot like what John’s gospel records Jesus as saying to His disciples as He was preparing to go to the cross.”
“In what way?” I asked.
“Jesus is recorded as telling the disciples,” Stan replied, “that He was going away to His Father’s house to prepare a place for them, and that there was going to be plenty of room for them.”
Continuing, he said, “While Jesus didn’t say it in that particular conversation, He had told them many times before they had to let Him know they were going to be there.”
“Like when He told them what they needed to do to be His disciples?” I asked.
“Exactly!” Stan replied. “In addition to denying self and taking up what He had for them to do, they were to follow Him. And that meant they were to follow Him all the way to heaven.”
Continuing, he said, “There’s no need for me to worry there won’t be any room for me when I step off the train, but it’s essential for me to let Him know I’m going to be there!”
“Same for me!” I replied.
“Same for everyone,” Stan concluded.
In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. John 14:2.
If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. Luke 9:23.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for your provision of life eternally in your presence when it’s time. Thank you for those who brought me to the truth of needing to accept your free gift of salvation so I have that assurance. I ask you to open all to see that they need to accept your invitation and to let you know they will take advantage of the room that is prepared for them. Please help me in following your lead so I will help others to see, know, and accept the truth. Forgive me when I don’t. Lead and help me to follow so I will. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Heaven is available to all when it is time to step into eternity, but the invitation has to be accepted. Have you sent in your RSVP? What does that look like? If you haven’t, what do you need to do to make certain God knows you will be there? Today’s the day; tomorrow may be too late. If you have already sent in your RSVP, how about the people you know who haven’t? What are you going to do to make sure they will be there?