Gathering at the Table

There is  something quite magical when you sit around a table with friends and family. The smell of food engulfing the air, utensils clanking on the plates, stories being passed around, and laughter encompassing every square inch of empty space indeed create a magical place. It is here, at this four legged, flat surface, that I can feel the Lord’s presence more than ever. I don’t think I am alone with feeling all happy-go-lucky the moment I sit down at the table. The significance of the table reaches far beyond its usefulness to eat on, but is a focal point for the events that take place around it.  There is a reason there are over 75 Bible verses about the “table,” and there is a reason Jesus first re-introduces himself to Peter over the “table.”  The table mattered to Jesus. The table brings people together, away from the business of the daily routine and brings people face to face. It was at the “table” that Jesus took bread and broke it, and said, “This is my body which is for you, do this in remembrance of me.” (Luke 22:19-22) This night established the Lord’s Supper and set the precedent for Paul to go to Corinth and teach the importance of the Lord’s Supper along with the key foundational elements that make up the church.

There always seems to be an emphasis to sit around the table with friends and family even more around the holiday season. Most of my favorite Christmas memories happened around the table. My family always did a Christmas Eve feast before the midnight Christmas Eve Service. We would sit, leaving the hustle and bustle of the day behind. Our signature dishes would be presented so beautifully, each family member surrounded by their favorite comfort food.  We would hold hands, and my dad would go around the table and say why he was so thankful for each of us, and then he would end it in a prayer. If I close my eyes, I can still go back to that dining room chair. The smell of homemade rolls filling my nostrils and warming my heart, my older brother running to the piano to play “mood music” while my dad becomes sentimental, my parents looking at each other with so much love and pride. All of us holding hands, coming before the Father, and thanking Him for all that He has given us. Though we don’t deserve it, He meets with us at the table. “This is my body which is for you, take and eat.”

I urge everyone, me included, to make sure we aren’t getting too wrapped up in “checking our lists off” that we miss out on the opportunity to sit and commune with our loved ones. The table has been set for you, “take and eat.”

“So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the Glory of God” 1 Corinthians 10:31

 

By: Terrell Lufburrow (Kids Pastor-Spring Branch)