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One of my favourites is one Jesus himself often used; he said God’s kingdom is like a party, a banquet, and a feast. Today God is calling people to leave behind the binge drinking and drugs and join the real party. Leave behind the rat race and workaholism and join his party, leave behind divisive and destructive patterns of behaviour. Leave behind oppressive religion based on fear and join the party of God. Let me relate this story from “The Secret Message of Jesus” of Tony Campolo – he was in a different time zone and couldn’t sleep s got up and went to a doughnut shop well after midnight. There were a number of local prostitutes there after a night’s business and overheard a conversation. One named Agnes said that it was her birthday tomorrow (39th). Her friend replied, “What do you want from me? A party, a cake & sing happy birthday?” Agnes said, “I’m just saying it’s my birthday. I don’t want anything from you. I mean, why should I have a party? I’ve never had a birthday party in my whole life.” Campolo got an idea, he asked the owner if they came in regularly – they did. So he got the owner and his wife in on his plans. They arranged a party for Agnes, candles, cake & typical decorations. Next night they cam in again, when she did she was met with “Surprise Agnes couldn’t believe it, they sang happy birthday, and she began to cry. When it came to cutting the cake she asked if they wouldn’t cut it so she could keep it awhile & she left cradling her cake like treasure. After this Campolo led the guests in a prayer for Agnes. Now the owner said he didn’t realise he was a preacher, & asked what kind of church he was from, his reply “I belong to a church that throws birthday parties for prostitutes at 3.30am” Owner replied “No you don’t. There ain’t no church like that. If there was I’d join it. Yep, I’d join a church like that.

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