If a 14-year-old boy has dropped out of school because he’s recently become a father and he needs to re-enrol, Jon will make it happen.
Reference: v.10 So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests. (TNIV Bible)
Explore: I’m fortunate enough to know people like Jon and Lisa Owen. They work for UNOH (Urban Neighbours of Hope), a mission to the poorest communities in certain cities.
They are currently living in Mt Druitt, Sydney, and open their homes and their lives to the abused, addicted and distraught in their neighbourhood.
Earlier in the year the Sydney Morning Herald wrote a piece on the Owens and explained their lives beautifully:
The Owens are insanely, crazily, constantly busy: they organise barbecues and a drop-in centre, cooking classes and a men’s group. Jon is part of the welfare team at the local high school; Lisa is a chaplain at Emu Plains prison.
But it’s the everyday emergencies that take up most of their time. If a 14-year-old boy has dropped out of school because he’s recently become a father and he needs to re-enrol, Jon will make it happen.
If an ex-prisoner wants to discuss his compulsory reporting requirements, Jon will advise him. If a young girl runs into their kitchen fleeing her parents at 11.30pm, the Owens will put her up.
But there was one sentence in the article written by Tim Elliott that said it all:
“It’s a fair bet that if Jesus Christ were around today, he’d be doing what the Owens are doing in Mount Druitt.”
Application: The Parable of the Wedding Feast in Matthew 22 is an interesting one. Someone throws a feast, but no one turns up, so they then open the doors to everyone and anyone.
This reminded me of the Owens; their willingness to open their doors, without formal invitation. Knowing Lisa and John, they would have as much fun as a wedding feast, and they truly depict the Kingdom of Heaven as the doors are flung open wide, and a mixture of people come in.
Prayer: Lord, it’s so easy for us to stay in our ‘safe little worlds’. May we put off our fear and comfort and reach out to those who need to experience Your love more than ever. Amen.
Do you know someone who is alone, addicted or abused? How can you help more people in these kinds of situations?
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.