You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
When I was a little girl, dinner time was the best part of my day. Though I enjoyed the meals which were typical of a blue-collar family of the era, I enjoyed the family which gathered to partake of them far more. Because my dad worked nights, dinner time was our first opportunity to spend quality time with him most days. This was “morning” to him and my dad almost always exhibited his sense of humor as he started his new day. We often laughed as much as we chewed throughout these shared meals.
Happily, my parents’ welcoming spirits remain with their children. We all do our share of opening our homes and our hearts to others. I’m particularly grateful that my parents’ example taught me to extend hospitality even to those who are less than friendly toward me. At my parents’ table, I found the tools and the willingness to invite in any of God’s children who want to take a seat and “chew” on whatever is on their minds. These tools have served me well all of my life.
It seems to me that we have no better example of welcoming others than we find in God. Jesus did an amazing job of revealing God’s loving ways toward all of humankind. In our goodness and in our failures, God finds us worthy of the present moment and of the things to come. If we can remember to be welcoming of others as we tackle this pandemic, the division which has also plagued this country and the tough days ahead, everything that lies ahead will be manageable because we’re face it together.
Welcoming God, your heart is open to each one of us. Help us to open our hearts as you have.
©2020 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved