Every time we celebrate the Lord’s Supper, we are told:  “God invites all to his table . . .”  In Luke 14: 16-24, Christ shares a similar story, but also lets us know what can happen if we let our busy lives take us away from God’s table.  In verses 16-17, Jesus says, “‘A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests.  At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’”  We are told that three people who were invited excused themselves from the banquet because they had (1) purchased a field, (2) acquired new oxen and wanted to use them, and (3) had just gotten married.  In other words, the concerns of this world prompted them to excuse themselves from the banquet.  We are told this made the master angry, so he told his servant to go out into the streets and bring the poor, the lame, the crippled, the blind, and anyone else he could find to “fill the house.”  I think that we can see the implication here, but, is it made all the more clear if we change the excuses to:  (1) purchasing a new house, (2) buying a new car (or piece of electronic equipment), and (3) getting a new job?  If Jesus invited you to God’s table, would we really excuse ourselves because we wanted to test drive our new fancy car?  Would we really excuse ourselves because we just got a new job and are too busy?  Truthfully, I know that I have answered “yes” to these questions before – and will probably do so again in the future.  I have let the pressures of this world take me away from a relationship with God – maybe not permanently, but certainly there are periods when this happens.  I am sure that I am not alone in this.  The point is that God truly does invite us to his table.  He wants us to be a part of the “full house” that He has made for us.  We cannot let ourselves get too busy with the cares of this world to accept His invitation.  This is why I believe it is important to set aside periods of the day when your attention is focused on nothing else than God.  Study the Bible and read God’s word – pray daily – these are the tools that we have at our disposal so that when He calls you to the banquet, you are ready and eager to say “Yes, I will come.”  I also hope that you will join me in praying for our brothers and sisters who have accepted God’s call and are going to spread His love and His word in Nicaragua.  We pray for blessings on their mission and for safe travels on their journey.

G. Grant Greenwood