Oh boy Do those readings speak to me.. We have all heard “You cannot please all of the people all of the time” Well at this time for just one day I would like to please some of the people And I can hear that same edge in the voice of Jesus as he is speaking to the gathered crowd He had just sent John the baptists disciples back to John who was in prison and whilst in prison John had heard all that Jesus was doing and in his fear in his isolation in his humanity John, who had been preaching the coming of the Messiah John who had been preaching austerity and repentance asked Jesus.. Are you the one.. ? And Jesus sends Johns disciples back with the words report what you see the lame walk the blind see those with leprosy are cured the dear hear the dead are raised and the good news is preached to the poor.. Jesus is saying What do you think John all of these things are happening and yet you … i in prison for teaching about me holding those to account who are living in impure and immoral ways ask Are you the one? And then… its as though a flood gate opens The question of John’s doubt and Jesus’ response gives Jesus permission to criticise this generation… Jesus lets everyone have a taste of what he experiences as he moves through the villages.. Jesus tells everyone how they have been behaving How the people who reject John because of the truth he speaks also reject Jesus as he speaks the truth.. Jesus is saying to the people listen no matter how you behave no matter how often you behave as children in the market place calling for one thing and expecting another Jesus is saying your really don't know what you want even when you get what you want.. So he goes on and says if you are following me or if you are following John I can see whatever happens you are going to moan you are not going to like it The signs of God at work is fruitfulness the signs of the spirit of God is growth growth in numbers accepting the good news.. however it is preached however it is lived out.. Be it in the way John taught.. many of you did not want to hear you look for something to detract from what is happening so instead of listening and letting the words sink in to the brain and into the heart when John taught repentance, and neither ate nor drank you detracted from what was going on and said “He has a demon” We aren't having anything to do with him Then Jesus says and I “the son of man came eating and drinking among you and you call me a glutton Jesus is saying you cannot have it all ways. there is a truth that you are detracting from a truth you are avoiding and that truth is God loves each of us and through that love God chose to come alongside humanity put aside all he was as God and come live as a human baby on earth teach .. Be the kingdom of heaven on earth in all he did and through being who he is he is rejected by many of those who heard the message Rejected by those who wont see the truth who wont see beyond what is familiar to them Remember Saul on the road to Damaskas Saul was one of those people he would not accept all he learned of Jesus why? because it did not fit with his theology even though the people had been waiting for the Messiah this one this itinerant preacher is not the one Saul and others wanted because he was not doing their bidding Jesus was doing a new thing A THING which lead to his death as those who would not see the truth had him killed.. Yet only when Saul was stopped literarily in his tracks and experienced the voice of Jesus the care and hospitality of others who accepted listened and acted upon all Jesus taught were Saul’s eyes opened his heart changed and his love of Jesus overwhelm the rigidity of all he was before that Damascus encounter.. Jesus is saying no matter where God sends a message there will be people who reject that message.. the messenger people who want to play games to hang on to that which is familiar that which does not challenge that familiarity which keeps them safe and in control So as Jesus says to what can I compare this generation 2000 + years ago I’m sure he says it today to this generation to our generation Jesus is saying no matter who is sent no matter what is said throughout generation upon generation there will be those who will not recognise me or what I am doing among and through others. And today here as Church as people of faith are we those people are we in this generation rejecting all that Jesus is teaching and doing among us out of fear do we play games do we collude do we only accept the bits of our faith which we like? As we come to the end of what Jesus is saying in to the crowd of people …. to this crowd … us today we might still have fear fear of actually coming to Jesus coming to Jesus sitting at his feat learning to rest in him learning again to trust him learning again to be as Jesus wants us to be Learning that as we make a choice to come near come near to the one who will reveal to us the heart of the Father learning again that as we come near to Jesus not just part way but all the way come right into his arms to sit right at his feet we must put down our own preferences our own yoke the things we bind ourselves with the things we bind ourselves to and willingly place those things at the feet of Jesus Only then will we stop behaving like children calling each other wanting things our way only then can we lay down our burdens.. To do those things takes a desire to do so as Mary said a good few weeks ago we have to let go of what our hands are holding on to We need to open wide our hands and drop all that is binding us at the feet of Jesus And yes it will take a willingness to come to come to the feet of Jesus in humility and not grasping on to what we want to grasp on to As we open our hands down lets each of us who are ready unburden our disbelief unburden our rigidity our fears our worries our hearts and lay our burdens down. Then slowly after we have laid down those burdens turn your hands over to receive from Jesus in freedom and choice.. unconditionally take on the heart of Jesus his yoke his teaching not through force or fear but through gentleness humility and love.. Amen.