"Go out into the highways and along the hedgerows and force them to come in. I want My house to be full." —Luke 14:23
God wants His house to be full for His heavenly banquet (Lk 14:23). His strategy for filling His house is to send His servants all over His kingdom, especially to the byroads (Mt 22:9), alleys (Lk 14:21), and other unlikely places. Thus, God's banquet will only be filled if His servants "come upon" (Mt 22:9) people that are hard to catch up with.
Jesus understands this dilemma. That's why He specifically calls His servants "fishers of men" (Mt 4:19). Any fisherman who wants to bring home a catch knows that he will probably not easily "come upon" large numbers of fish; rather, he must learn "how to cope with every circumstance" (Phil 4:12). He knows that he must study the habits of the fish and spend much time, effort, and frustration learning their favorite feeding places and times. A leisurely midday fishing trip might be convenient for the fisherman, but he will likely bring home an empty boat. His best catch might come before dawn, in freezing weather, in dangerous waters, or after many unsuccessful attempts. The main question is: Will the fisherman take the trouble to "come upon" the fish?
Politicians, salespeople, telemarketers, and researchers understand this concept clearly. Their daring boldness in reaching the unreachable leads to success in their ventures. Followers of Jesus, "open your eyes and see! The fields are shining for harvest!" (Jn 4:35) There's a house to be filled. Bring them in (Lk 14:21).
Prayer: Father, I will take the appropriate initiative to reach the people You want me to come upon (Lk 16:8).
Promise: "Do not grow slack but be fervent in spirit; He Whom you serve is the Lord." —Rm 12:11
Praise: Mary invited her friend Melinda to come to a Bible study, and Melinda came to Christ.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by one of our editors.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert A. Stricker, May 8, 2001
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 18, 2001