Whenever I invite people over, I check the house—at least the public parts. Is everything relatively neat and clean? Laundry hanging anywhere? Kitchen counters cleared? Magazines and books straightened?
If people show up unexpectedly, they get what they get, and it might not be pretty. I could even be embarrassed that things aren’t as perfect as I’d like them to appear.
In the Gospel of John this week, John has his characters answer a question with a question. As a couple of disciples begin to tail Jesus after his baptism, this happens:
“When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” [from John 1]
Then Jesus invites them to “come and see.”
We have only our imaginations to guess what they find when they visit Jesus at home.
It is likely the Sabbath, because it appears they stay overnight. Do they see him interacting with family? Hosting the Sabbath meal? Praying over the food? Singing a psalm? Laughing at a joke? Telling stories? Do they see him sharing leftovers with the poor? Talking to unclean people on the way home? Talking about what to do about a widowed neighbor or a depressed friend? Do they hear some of his teaching, or is just seeing how he lives on a random day life-changing enough?
Whatever they experience, it is interesting or moving enough for them to tell some others about it, and to give them the same invitation to come and see.
So I wonder…
What would people see if they came on short notice to my home? Or to yours?