This Sunday afternoon we went to our first class of Dave Ramsey's "Financial Peace University." There were 17 families who signed up for the class at our church, River City Vineyard.
We watched a DVD for an hour and then broke up into two groups and answered some discussion questions. Most of us are married, and pretty much everyone could say they had made some poor financial decisions in the past. Everyone was looking to learn how to better manage finances and either get to a point where they could give freely toward different areas or different situations when God moved on them, or they wanted to create security for their children in the future.
It's a 13-week commitment but we're excited about it. Getting started is always the hardest part, but when you do, then you've got momentum to keep going!
Right now we're praying about getting Lanier a different car, and paying taxes and how to do all of that.
Last night we read Matthew 22 and considered what Jesus meant when He said, "The kingdom of God is like a king who invited guests to the wedding banquet for his son." Who were the "guests," who were the king's "servants," and who were those who got invited later when all the guests declined to come? Why did the man who wasn't properly attired speechless when the king asked why he didn't wear wedding clothes? And finally, what did Jesus mean when He summed it all up, "many are called but few are chosen"?
We decided that the king represents God, the son is Jesus, the wedding banquet is the end, when the earth is gone and we're facing eternity, and God is inviting people into heaven. The guests, Lanier thought, were the Jews, God's first chosen people. I guessed that the king's servants were/are pastors, prophets, missionaries, etc. God's messengers. When the Jews refused to come, then the king sent out the invitation to all the rest of the world (Gentiles, or, us).
We weren't sure about the guy who showed up without dressing up. We figured Jesus meant this was a man who didn't bother to exchange his normal, dirty clothes (eg., his normal, dirty lifestyle) for "robes of righteousness," or that which God promises us when we accept what Christ did for us, and in faith, receive that new life, the holiness that Christ purchased for us and we can only accept when we repent and submit ourselves to Him. So the man tried to show up without having that clothing of righteousness, trying to enter on his own terms, without accepting the sacrifice and reconciliation of the Son. Hence, his being thrown out.
So why are many called but few are chosen? We thought maybe it means all of us are called (God wants everyone to be with Him and celebrate eternity with Him), but few repent and accept Christ's payment, taking on that righteousness, and since God cannot be around sin, only the few who are righteous, without sin, will be chosen to enter into His kingdom. It's nothing personal, it's just the way it works.
Anyone else have any further insight?