July 14, 2011
Jesus said to them, "My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work." John 4:34
Did you ever get a letter asking you to report for jury duty? If so, what was your reaction?
From what I've been able to find out, most (but certainly not all) folks immediately begin thinking of an excuse that will allow them to be released from serving.
For example, one lady told a Chicago judge she had four tickets to one of Oprah's last tapings before the program went off the air. (The judge excused her from serving.)
Now there are good excuses for not being on a jury. Michael Wylie had such an excuse. It was a number of years ago that he was sent the letter to report. Wylie ignored the letter. A few more letters went out, but still he didn't respond. Since ignoring a jury duty letter is a criminal act in Massachusetts, officials filed documents against Mr. Wylie.
But, as I say, Mr. Wylie had a good excuse. That excuse was Mr. Wylie was dead. In fact he died shortly after the first letter had been sent out. Unfortunately nobody bothered to check. According to the state's deputy jury commissioner, the criminal complaint against Mr. Wylie will be removed.
Obviously most folks don't have as ironclad an excuse from jury duty as did Mr. Wylie. Most of us just find serving on jury duty to be an inconvenience. We feel that serving on jury duty gets in the way of our plans and upsets our routine.
"So what's the point?" you ask.
The point is this: yesterday I thumbed my way through Scripture looking for the excuse Jesus gave when He was asked to go to earth to redeem lost humankind.
You know what? I didn't find one.
This surprised me. After all, Jesus was being asked to give His life, and not just a few hours or weeks. More than that, Jesus wasn't being asked to judge our innocence or guilt; He was being asked to take our place on death row. And as far as being inconvenient ...
nothing can be more inconvenient than dying on a cross for someone else.
Look as long as you want. You will never find Jesus making up an excuse to get out of being our Savior.
On the contrary, what you will hear Him say is this: "My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work."
Thank God for such loving grace.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, I give thanks You are the Savior and I am the redeemed. You gave when I would not; You sacrificed when I would not; You lived and died for someone else, which I would not. Grant me the grace to acknowledge Your sacrifice that You have shared with me. In Your Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries