Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost
There is a fable told about a pig and a chicken. As they walk down the road, the chicken says, “Hey Pig, I was thinking we should open a restaurant!” Pig replies, “Hm, maybe. What we should call it?” Chicken responds, ‘How about ‘Bacon-n-Eggs’?” Pig thinks for a moment and says, “No thanks. You see, I’d be fully committed, but you’d only be making a contribution.” The pig had to give up its life for the restaurant, while the chicken had only to lay some eggs.
In Luke 14, we hear Jesus saying to his crowd of followers, “Whoever . . . does not forsake all that he [or she] has cannot be my disciple” (v. 33 RSV). Jesus sets the enthusiastic crowd—and us—straight about the cost of faith. Discipleship calls not for a contribu-tion, but for total commitment! While not for a moment implying the abandonment of one’s family and responsibilities, there is still a clear choice to be made between the call of the gospel and the call of the world’s obligations. If you are not willing to completely answer the call, then you may not be ready to be Jesus’ disciple. Undeniably, Jesus desires total commitment from anyone choosing to take up the cross and follow him. There can be no compromise; it is all or nothing.
The question is, where do we stand in our commitment? Are we, like the chicken, comfortable in just contributing our eggs? Or do we urge each other to be more committed to Christ and to the church’s mission to “go and make disciples of all nations”? Today, may we truly pray, “Lord, wherever you lead me, I will follow, follow all the way!” If God wants “bacon” from us, let’s be committed enough to give it to him.
Earl St. C. Goulbourne, pastor, Grace Moravian Church, Queens, New York