Now that is a Party
This morning as I was reading in my new devotional called, “Devotions from the Front Porch”, I found myself full of awe and wonder at God’s goodness and was reminded of a key principle God destined my family and I to live by.
First, I must say…I am so blessed by my friends that have gathered around my table over the years. Today, I am especially blessed by my dear friend Jean, who always gives the best prizes! She listens to Holy Spirit and gives accordingly. For our Nashville adventure Jean gave me “Devotions from the Front Porch.” Although I don’t have a porch yet, every time I pick up the book I dream, smile and know that soon I will have a forever home with a big porch, rocking chairs, a two seater hanging swing and lots of flowers. When I do, I will let you know and you will be more than welcome to “swing” on by. Thank you Miss Jean, I love my prize!
As I picked up the devotion this morning, I was reminded how good God is. It is the delight of his heart to take care of what seems like the littlest of details . . . like a brand new devotion that sparks your heart or even the smallest of prayers that he bends down to listen. You see, in preparation for this new season, I had asked Holy Spirit for a new reading plan. I was feeling stale in my morning prayer time and wanted something that would focus me on the things that he would have me focus on in this new season. Now, I know the importance of partnering with God and doing my part, but to be honest, I hadn’t done anything other then put it on my mental to do list. How sweet is it that God, in his faithfulness who cares about every detail, even something as minor as receiving a “fresh focus” during my morning iced coffee with Him would put it on Miss Jean's heart to buy me the perfect devotion to steer my time with Him. I know it may seem simple, but sometimes He is simply that good. I’ve only delved into a few pages and already I feel like the author is drawing out truths that are deep in my heart. Thank you Holy Spirit for caring about the simplest desires of my heart! What simple desire do you have stored up in your heart? Take a moment now to acknowledge them with Holy Spirit.
Now the reason why I picked up the pen to write this morning was inspired by the scripture that I have read probably a hundred times but, skimmed over before; Matthew 9:10. Matthew invites Jesus and his disciples to his home to be his dinner guests along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners.
NOW THAT IS A DINNER PARTY!
Matthew sure knew how to throw a party! This one simple verse, raises a variety of questions and thoughts that I am pondering today. Three of which I would like to share with you.
- If I was inviting Jesus to dinner, would I want to share him with anyone else? Before you jump to answer this, take a moment at the front porch of your mind and think it through.
- Matthew was brilliant. He knew everyone loved a fresh home cooked meal so he invites two groups of guests that would never come together naturally to sit at his table and break bread together at his home. What better way to start a conversation, build community and evangelize in his sphere of influence. I believe Matthew understood the principle of‘invite them into His presence and I will do the rest.” Now go ahead and get back to the porch . . . are there people in your life that God is inviting you to share this same principle with?
- Matthew understood the importance of bringing people into his home and gathering around his table. As I read Matthew 9:10, I realized Jesus and His disciples actually went to Matthew’s home! Think about it . . . this is no small dinner party! Jesus, his 12 disciples, the sinners, tax collectors and we can’t forget his family. I wonder if Matthew called his wife and said, “honey I’m bringing home a few people for dinner tonight, are we all set?” Oh wait, they didn’t have phones! How did she prepare? I wonder if they lived a life where the table was built so that it could expand easily for guests. Was Matthew’s wife in the habit of cooking extra for the unexpected guest? In hopes you never left the front porch, how often do you prepare for the more? It’s not the quantity that matters here as much as making it a simple practice of inviting others to gather around your table.
Now my final question, the real, deep question I am pondering this morning . . . Who am I inviting to my table? Is it my close friends? You know, those that make me feel good and give me something in return? Or, am I like Matthew, inviting the tax collectors and reputable sinners to break bread at my kitchen table. Is my table a place where there is not only yummy food, but also a place where freedom happens? The simple act of inviting someone to your table says you care, shows them they are valued and that you are not only willing to listen but that you want to!
Jesus cares about who we invite to our tables. I pray that you are moved by Holy Spirit with compassion for those around you and that he begins to highlight those in need of an invitation. You can do the meal prep, but I encourage you to allow His presence to do the work.
Life Happens Around The Table