Sunday, August 29, 2010
On one occasion when Jesus was going to the house of a leader of the Pharisees to eat a meal on the sabbath, they were watching him closely. When he noticed how the guests chose the places of honor, he told them a parable. "When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet, do not sit down at the place of honor, in case someone more distinguished than you has been invited by your host; and the host who invited both of you may come and say to you, 'Give this person your place,' and then in disgrace you would start to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and sit down at the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he may say to you, 'Friend, move up higher'; then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at the table with you. For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted." He said also to the one who had invited him, "When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous." Luke 14:1, 7-14
Labor Day weekend we are attending a family wedding that is probably the blow-out of the century. There are several ceremonies, several formal functions and festivities and expenses to the max. Now I know every one has a right to celebrate and have a wonderful wedding, but this has the makings of a royal event, an opulent splash and even, a disaster waiting to happen. With 10 attendants on each side and two clashing wealthy mother-in-laws to be, it could be the fodder for generations of stories. And I cannot help but think about the many people that will go hungry that day, and how many more people could be cared for it we were not so over the top about everything when it comes to weddings.
Jesus wanted the people at the wedding to know that flaunting wealth and status is a human game with no winners. Sharing wealth, position and power with others provides for winning for everyone and is the expected currency of God's reign in our midst and forever.
Today, I want to remember that everything I have is a gift from God. Every comfort and currency is mine to share with others or hide away and be selfish. Today I want to live as one who knows and sees God's reign in my midst. Sharing place and goods so that we might all thrive and God's light might shine in our time.