But there is a stricter dress code for the white tie invitation. It specifically calls for a tailcoat, starched white shirt, white waistcoat and white bow tie. There is not much call for white tie anymore. I read that just two years ago when the Costume Institute was holding it's gala that many contacted them and told them that it was just too costly and inconvenient to try to put this ensemble together. Very expensive, very exclusive. Now white tie is usually called for at events like the Nobel Prize presentation and at royal events and state dinners, where heads of governments or countries have invited other dignitaries to meet with them.
I doubt I will ever be invited to a black tie event. Although it would be nice to get all dressed up and be fancy for awhile. I know for certain that I will never be invited to a white tie event. I am not on a first name basis with any presidents, kings or ambassadors.
But I am on a first name basis with the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. I do know the great I AM and the Alpha and Omega. I am closely acquainted with Jesus, the Lamb who was slain for us.
In Luke 14 Jesus tells of going to a leader of the Pharisees home to eat. And how everyone there was jockeying for position so as to look more important. He tells them that they should not just invite friends and family and the rich. They should invite the blind, the lame, the poor, the maimed. Don't invite only those who can repay in kind; invite those who can only repay in gratitude. He then goes on to tell of a man who is going to have a dinner party. Everyone he invites comes up with an excuse not to go. So he tells his servant to go out and invite the poor, the lame, the maimed and the blind. And when that still did not fill up the house, he said go farther and invite anyone who will come, that the home may be full. So what started out as an exclusive white tie event became a great celebration for all. Those who came were in rags, but they were treated as honored guests. They had probably never seen such a fancy celebration. Never eaten such delectable food, never imagined such a dazzling array of finery. But they were welcomed in, regardless of their status or station.
Jesus is planning a white tie event. He is planning an event so extraordinary, so amazing that we cannot even imagine it. He is planning the wedding feast of the Lamb. The feast where all who are called by Him, and answer that call will enter into a celebration to end all others. And Jesus is not just calling the rich, the influential, the famous. He is calling you and me. He said in Matthew 11:28 for the weary and burdened to come to Him. That doesn't sound like tux and tails to me. That is rags and dirty garments. Jesus doesn't call the filled, He calls the hungry. He doesn't call the strong, He calls the weak. He doesn't call the one who is cleaned up ahead of time; He calls the sinner. He calls the one in filthy dirty rags and then He gives us new attire. He calls the ones who want and need Him and He gives them new life. He doesn't expect us to be clean and neat and pure as the driven snow; He takes us while we are messy and dirty and broken. He calls and when we answer, "Yes Lord", He comes and makes us new. He takes what the world would throw away, those of us who have been lost, shattered, abused. He takes those who have been destroyed by addiction and bound by sin and welcomes them as honored guests. He takes all who will accept His invitation, regardless of who we are, what we have done, or what we have to offer. He takes those who know they need Him and He ushers them in to a gala that has no rival. He is opening His doors to you and to me...the weary, the burdened, the lost, the poor, the dirty, the broken, the messy.
He is giving out a white tie invitation...come as you are.