Jonathan's Perspective  

Oct 9

'Table Talk'

The table is where families have gathered for centuries. Food brings us together, and it is around the table that relationships are formed. Consider the many important activities that go on around the dining table:

  • Families tell stories around the table. Those stories locate us in relationship to those who have gone before. The stories of the past are OUR stories. When we hear about great grandma or uncle so-and-so our family values are communicated in both explicit and implicit ways. All our conversations remind us of who we are, what we value, and how we are to conduct ourselves. Every time we come to the Lord’s Table we tell stories of our ancestors of faith and begin to understand our place in the great line of witnesses and how God wants us to live.
  • Friends are created and community is expanded around the table. Sharing a meal has always been a symbol of acceptance, hospitality, love, and care. Before long we find that we have many brothers and sisters with shared values and identities who have come to the table. Every Sunday millions of Christians around the world gather at the Lord’s Table. We are many tribes, tongues, races, and nations, yet we share one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all.
  • Peace is forged at the table. At the end of a conflict, the two opposing parties negotiate what their relationship will look like going forward. In 1945 a table was set upon the USS Missouri. Gen. Douglas MacArthur and Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu sat down to sign an agreement for peace. Similarly, we humble and surrender ourselves to Almighty God. Peace was brought through Jesus that outlines our relationship with God. The Lord’s Table is a place where we find peace with God and peace with one another.
  • We receive fuel to meet all the challenges of life at the table. We may not remember what we ate, but each bit was important for our lives today. We would not have the energy to face the day without what we ate before. It is at the Lord’s Table that we receive the fuel of grace for holy living. At the table we receive fuel to mend the hurts of the past – forgiveness – and fuel to engage the challenges ahead – grace. Both are critical for us to experience abundant life.

As you gather around the table tonight with friends and family, think about the many ways you are formed in that time together. Embrace the wisdom, joy, peace, and guidance that those relationships provide. And remember that the same is available to you every time you come to the Lord’s Table.

Pressing into 'life that is truly life',

Jonathan

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