The good news for today is that all of us have been invited to the best party ever. To the best celebration. Whether you have thought of yourself as in or out, good or bad, religious or non-religious, God wants you there. Christ has made a way. There is a seat waiting for you.
No matter how rich or poor we become, in our world we are always told, “You don’t have enough.” We are always being pointed to the bigger house, the more far away vacation, the better brand car, the more illustrious school, the clothes that will make us fit in. We start living out of this fear of not having enough, and instead of enjoying the present, we fear the future, and we stop giving and sharing and working. We stop living for the kingdom, living for love, living for peace, living how Christ invites us to live.
We as a church should be a place for peace, not more worry and stress. We should be a place where all people have a moment to take a breath (pause) and know that God loves them, just as they are.
For many of us, we think of Jesus’ grace as something that wipes our ledger clean, something that gets us a pass into heaven. That’s true, but Jesus’ grace is so much more than that. It is a grace that claims our whole lives. It is a grace that makes us into new and more holy people. It is a grace that makes us work for justice and freedom, care about oppression and lift up those who have been hurt.
We are called to be ordinary, everyday heroes, who refuse to conform when faced with evil. You may wonder, “Who am I to do such a thing?” I’m no Moses or David, no prophet or king.
The story of Joseph reminds us that we serve a God of grace and transformation. We serve a God who knows there is pain and evil in the world, but is working to bring healing and wholeness and love back into it. And God wants us to be a part of it too. God’s grace is powerful enough that even our worst enemies may one day be again our brothers and sisters.
And as much as Joseph’s story is a story of family, it is also the story of our world. It is the story of how we have treated people whenever we have stopped seeing them as human beings, when we have not viewed them as brothers and sisters worth our protection, love, and safety.
Jesus, in our passage for today, invites us to go after the true treasure with all that we have. He knows where true joy, true love, true life is found. It comes in following him. And he is telling us there is no amount of comfort, of possessions, of wealth or privilege or anything else that is worth more than this treasure. And sometimes it takes giving up those things to get to the true treasure.