Last week, we celebrated my youngest son’s and my daughter-in-law’s birthdays. My “twins” born eleven years apart. In our home, celebration involves getting together for a meal and enjoying each other’s company.
Ok, so we find all kinds of reasons to get together for a meal, one night a week is reserved just for family. This is especially important as children marry and move out of the house. It gives us all a chance to reconnect. But celebrations are special. It’s a time to bring out the nicer dishes, put in that extra effort, perhaps add in a special gift at the end. I love cooking, and spend the day planning each dish with consideration for our guest of honor. It’s work, but the family enjoying what I have done for them is payment in full. That, and being together.
Imagine my disappointment when, after the invitation is out, the work is done, the food just right, I get notice that someone I was really looking forward to seeing, can’t make it. Sure. Things happen. But when they cancel again and again?
We have been invited to a weekly meal with the family, a celebration of immense importance. Yet, so often we find an excuse to be absent: My stomach hurts (again–we call this “Sabbathitis.”). I am tired. I will watch on television. I will think of Him as I walk alone in the woods. He’ll understand.
He has invited me to His house, with the family–His church, for a meal. He paid with His life so I can be there, to dine with Him. Do I value that so little as to think my excuses are adequate? What makes me think I have time for the banquet, if I don’t have time for a meal? Why would I want to be anywhere else?
Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things. Psalm 107:8-9.