This past Sunday, Jared Mannon preached from Luke 14. I have always loved this story because it reminds of those birthday parties we all grew up going to. You know the ones that I am referring to- where a fellow student brings invitations to class and gives them to everyone. For a moment, think about the anxiety that can come over us in that moment. As fellow classmates get the invitations, we internally hope that we too will receive one.
Although my example relates to children, Luke 14 is still about invitations. The parable is set up to compare those who thought they were too good for the party and those who thought they weren’t deserving. We know how the story goes. Those who thought they were too good made excuses as to why they couldn’t attend, leaving the host with empty seats around a prepared table.
But this is where this story gets interesting, because the owner then invites those who have been overlooked previously. Can you imagine the excitement that these individuals felt when they received this invitation? For the first time, they were welcomed to a table.
Friends, as followers of Jesus Christ, we too are called to extend invitations to our tables. The Gospel of Jesus is about making more room for people and pulling up extra chairs if we need to. And in the story of Luke 14, we learn that sometimes our tables are empty because we haven’t been looking in the right places for our guests.