An event planned for Christian fellowship, inspiration and learning had been planned recently.  These were some of the actual responses to the invitation (with a few names and events omitted to protect the innocent).
  • Sorry.  So very sick.  I am so sad to miss this!
  • Unfortunately I will not be able to make it.  (Son) has a game Friday night and __________ has a birthday party.  Saturday both have games plus we’re getting company from out of town.  Keep me in mind for next time around.
  • Sound like something I could use in my life right now!  Have to work concessions  on Friday and have a baby shower and (some other kind of) party on Saturday.
  • I’m so bummed but we have a (sports) tournament this weekend.
  • Bummer.  I will be (in another country).
  • Thank you for the invitation.  Unfortunately I am doing a ____________ party that evening.
  • I’ll have to check with ____________.  I don’t think it will work out but thank you for inviting me. 
  • I have to check my calendar but I am hoping to attend.
When I was in choir at Sterling College (in the olden days), a small group of us sang the folk song,  The Wedding Banquet.  Its refrain went like this:

I cannot come to the banquet,
Don't trouble me now,
I have married a wife,
I have bought me a cow,
I have fields and commitments,
That cost a pretty sum,
Pray hold me excused
I cannot come. 

As the wife of a pastor, I hear quite a few "excuses" offered by people who aren't able to attend services of the church.  Fairly typical are the late night, travel and vacations, and family illness explanations.  Increasingly, sporting events are being scheduled on Sunday mornings.  And then there are some REALLY creative ones!

By the way, what is one of the most creative excuses/explanations YOU'VE heard recently???
(Not necessarily church-related)

Of course, church attendance cannot be compared to the final banquet referred to in the 4th verse of this song based on the parable found in Matthew 22:1-14.  (But the parallel in excuses are quite interesting....)

Now God has a lesson
For the rest of mankind:
If we are slow in responding
He may leave us behind.
He is preparing a banquet
For that great and glorious day,
When the Lord and Master calls us
Be certain not to say:  I cannot come to the banquet....(Refrain)  

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise,  
making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. (Ephesians 5:15-16).


    1. Good post...I think most people don't even respond or make excuses for events that don't want to attend now days...which means they don't even think about not attending the banquet set before the table of the King.
      As for church attendance missed...well our church is having to turn people away because there isn't enough we were one of 100's that had to go home and missed church, even though we were 15 minutes before the service. Now they will add another service and we will all change times again, but we will make in.
      I am glad God always has a chair for me when I come to meet Him...He is never full and never turns me away!

    2. Janette, I really hope you'll post more about being turned away from church! This is SO exciting!

    3. Our Sunday morning service was about making excuses. An excuse I recently heard that bothered me was..."My husband won't let me." and it was church related.

    4. Oh yes we are so full of excuses aren't we?! I think part of that is human nature or just laziness! I've been guilty of both to be sure!
      I think if we all try to do our best, then we've done good. Love Di ♥

    5. Tried to comment and lost the comment, hoping this is not a repeat. Since I am a pastor's wife, I've heard all the excuses. I once was told a gal wasn't in church because the only photography appointment they could get was a Sunday morning! Then I asked someone if they were going to attend the free, elaborate tea the church was sponsoring--their reply was simply, "No," with no explanation. I can't stand sports and think those excuses might be the most lame of all. We as a nation are not choosing the better thing--when we will take a sporting event over the chance to grow spiritually, something's wrong. I'm glad to hear Janette say her church is thriving--that is a rare thing these days! I'd like to hear more on that too!

    6. Lori, I don't mind sports and think there is value in honing ones' skills, learning teamwork, exercise, etc. But I think it is easy to get it all out of perspective (same with blogging, crafts, or ANY activity).

      I need to keep "first things first", choosing (like Mary) the BEST things that "cannot be taken from her".

    7. I can't even think of any excuses I've heard lately!!! All I know is that our relationship with God shou ld have FIRST place in our life, yes even over sports..because if that's not right and being tended to like it should, nothing else matters...!!! Thanks for sharing this :) :) Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)


    Writing a Song a Week #3

    Writing a Song a Week #3
    ♪ I wait for the Lord; my soul waits and in his word I hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning ♪ (Psalm 130:5-6)