March 3 – Parables – Seat at the Table

Read Luke 14:7-11

Have you been inconvenienced lately? Silly question, I know! As soon as I wake up and begin my day, I don’t think about the fact that I will be inconvenienced. I also don’t think about the idea that I will inconvenience others! I wake up with a sense of clear direction and plans.

*Then I make that phone call regarding an unexpected bill from a company we no longer use. Twenty minutes later, I get to ask my question.

*I go to the grocery store to buy aluminum foil, frozen broccoli and peas. They are out of all three.

I know I am not alone in this and I know I inconvenience others! Somehow I don’t feel the agitation in my spirit when I am the one asking for consideration and help.

When I look solely at my day through my human grid of understanding, I am living a self-focused life. I may get my tasks done and my goals may be completed but I have focused on an idol…me! When I get irritated because things don’t go according to my plan, I am worshiping my plan.

Jesus explains His kingdom solution for my problem of a self-focused life in our text today. This parable uses a direct form of conversation. Jesus inserts His listeners into the parable.

“When YOU are invited to a wedding feast…sit down in the lowest place.” (vv. 8-10) Jesus is speaking to a group of religious leaders who were called Pharisees. They understood wedding protocol and knew what would be an honorable seat at the occasion. He had been invited to a ruler’s house for a Sabbath meal. Jesus noticed how they jostled for the best seating at the table. Jesus explains in v. 11 what the kingdom principle is.

 “For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Jesus himself had shown them how! Paul writes in Philippians 2:5-7 that “He made himself of no reputation taking the form of a bond servant, and came in the likeness of man.”

This is our example! It reminds me of the chorus to a hymn I learned as a child.

“Make me a blessing, make me a blessing, out of my life may Jesus shine.”

So, when I wake up tomorrow, may this be on my heart instead of my “to do” list:

  • To live and serve as Jesus did with a humble, serving heart.
  • To bless and love others as He desires me to.
  • To remember: Jesus, then others, then myself. What a great way to spell JOY.

Celeste Kern

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