Who’s on first? Who is the fastest? Who does dad like best? All of the energy and worry we place into getting noticed and gaining prestige is called into question by the gospel passage from Luke read during Sunday’s worship service. In Luke 14, Jesus says to those gathered to stop trying to sit at the head of the table, but rather that the first shall be last, and also don’t mess up honor with God by trying to be repaid by people. He warns the host not to invite his other rich friends, since they might repay him with a return invite. Rather invite those who cannot pay you back, and thus gain honor in the coming Kin-dom. Here is Rev. Kent’s prayer offered by moderator, Gail Wolford. May it be a blessing in your week.
Unaware of the angels we tread upon or take for granted, we come to you now, Lord, in the silence of our thoughts and with the furor of the world. We come hoping to to let light into our hearts and minds. Exhausted with trying to be first all of the time, tired from scrabbling for the best starting position, how good it is to rest in these moments of quiet, to turn the table and sit without expectation at the foot of your grace. We are not greatest in your pantheon of saints, nor can many of us hope to be noticeable among those who are extraordinary. But this we pray: no matter how great or small we seem or be, to remember how much small acts of kindness mean to others, and how helping others be great is the hallmark of those who follow you. Keep us from the perils and ill-effects of vain ambition. Help us make the world kinder, more just, more hospitable, and more joyful for more people. It cannot happen without us, we know, but we cannot do it without you. Inspire your people, Lord of the table. Turn it, and us, just so, so that all can find their place. –Rev. Kent Gilbert