This morning I received a convicting devotional in my inbox. The author based her message on Luke 14:12-14. This is a parable that Jesus spoke to the Pharisees when dining at the home of one of them. Just before He told this story, He talked about the seating placement and the idea of not assuming the highest place. He finishes that statement with, “For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” (verse 11) This statement about humility leads right into the next parable.
He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”
Wow. I have prayed for humility many times. It seems that this is one expression of humility — to invite the downtrodden, the unwanted, and the hurting to your feast. As I read Sharon Sloan’s devotion about having a guest list with these types of people, I couldn’t help but think about the feast that we’ll have here today. We invited our family. That’s pretty typical for Thanksgiving Day and it’s not that we shouldn’t have invited family, but it made me wonder if there is someone that He would have had me invite that I did not. Someone that would love to feel part of a family. Someone who needs a friend. Perhaps someone who does not know Him.
So as we now go about the final preparations for a day of feasting and giving God all the glory for His many provisions, I will be constantly praying that He would bring to mind and heart anyone that He would have me invite over to share in the meal and festivities.
It’s neat that He will bless and honor that, “and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.” But I just want to grow in humility and honor Him. I don’t want or need the blessing. I’ve already received more than my share of blessings! I truly long to bless others with Him. And if He doesn’t bring anyone to mind for this feast, there will always be other parties to seek Him about His desired guest list!