Great Plains Daily Devotional for 8/31/2022

Today please be in prayer for

Mount Hope UMC
Wichita West District
Pratt: First UMC
Wichita West District
Iuka UMC
Sawyer UMC
Wichita West District
Bentley UMC
Sedgwick UMC
Wichita West District

Today's Lectionary Text

Luke 14:15-24

One of the dinner guests, on hearing this, said to him, “Blessed is anyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” Then Jesus said to him, “Someone gave a great dinner and invited many. At the time for the dinner he sent his slave to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is ready now.’ But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of land, and I must go out and see it; please accept my regrets.’ Another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to try them out; please accept my regrets.’ Another said, ‘I have just been married, and therefore I cannot come.’ So the slave returned and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and said to his slave, ‘Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ And the slave said, ‘Sir, what you ordered has been done, and there is still room.’ Then the master said to the slave, ‘Go out into the roads and lanes, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled. For I tell you, none of those who were invited will taste my dinner.’ ”

Today's Devotional

There is something always so wonderful about a party. Whether it's a wedding celebration, a birthday, or even just a game night with friends, getting together and eating food is always a fun time.
Sometimes though, when preparing for a party, we get so caught up in making sure the guest list is “exclusive” or only includes certain names, we forget there are many other people who might wish to be included or who we should invite. We think about the size of our table and how many people might fit, worrying if there will be enough for everyone.
I think back to Thanksgivings as a kid, when all my cousins, aunts and uncles would come over and we would share the meal together. Rather than keeping the table to just a few place settings, my mom would add another table that went out into our living room to accommodate everyone. We would find every available chair to make sure there was room. Even making room around our table for those who did not have a family to celebrate with. This is how I imagine the kin-dom of God, a place where all are welcome and there is room for each person, not just a few.
The task for us is to show up and receive this gift, but also to make rooms at our own tables. The song “Crowded Table” by the Highwomen rings these words of truth: “I want a house with a crowded table and a place by the fire for everyone. Let us take on the world while we're young and able and bring us back together when the day is done.” May we welcome all to our tables.
-- Maddi Baugous, associate pastor
Omaha First UMC

Prayer for Reflection

Generous and loving God, at your table there is always enough. You never shorthand us but give freely and welcome all to your home. May we ensure those on the margins are truly welcomed at our tables and may we make room for all. Together we pray. Amen.


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