Some days I forget that there is an open invitation to come and rest at the table of grace. I get a little too caught up on the reasons why I shouldn’t be invited rather than remember that mercy has been extended.
Some days I forget that there is an open invitation for others to come, too; though not to the table of grace before the King, more like the table of grace in my home.
I forget that we are to be the extension of His hands and His feet when I am busy reminding Him of what is wrong with my acceptance of His invitation to come and rest awhile in the blessing of fellowship and a meal, as a result I miss the real gift of grace … Communion.
I was reminded of the important purpose of this invitation the other day. Being encouraged to give away the burdens recalled the abundant blessing attached to His promise. And it hit me, maybe I need to be an imitator of this hospitality to really understand how to accept the gift?
Matthew 11:28-30 says, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] Take my yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is wholesome and My burden is light and easy to be borne.
All too easily I can be lost in the lies that drown out the voice of the One calling my name, inviting me to partake of the blessing His rest offers. It is easier to be busy than to think about the feelings of failure or the lack that faces us in our broken situations. Sometimes, trying to smile in spite of the breaking your heart feels, inflicted by life’s unkindness, is less work than dealing with the emotions that flood in their wake. Just as damaging are the untruths we believe about ourselves, which keep us from experiencing the gathering blessing that grace’s table allows.
The reality is we don’t have to give in to the accusations that the enemy swings our way and we don’t have to die daily to the false words that the world says we must live up to in order to be accepted.
You have been invited to dine with the King, dear heart. You have a reserved place at the table of grace and an open request to come and rest your weary heart finding refreshment for your soul.
There is a requirement you need to meet though… it may be hard at first, but with repeated practice it will be just as natural as breathing.
- As you come, strip off the weights that are holding you in and tripping you.
- Let go of the burden that is limiting your ability to move forward.
- Look up! Look at the table that is set just for you.
- Remember: YOU ARE EXPECTED!
There is a promise which follows the command in our scripture example. The word says to come and as you arrive you will receive: Rest, Release, & Refreshment.
But first you have to accept the invitation and come.
Grace is an offering that has no timetable or expiration date. We can’t understand the capacity of the Father’s love fully, but we can FEAST upon its fullness. We can linger near its loveliness. We can dive into its depths. We can embrace its example. We can wear its worth.
Attend as an honored guest, but accept in reverence and awe
We need to accept the invitation that has already been held out to us to come to the grace table. The entrance fee is an exchange.. your weary traveling clothes that are binding you down for the glory’s garment of love.
Grace is your ticket, which was purchased at a price you could never afford, but it is not something you will ever have to work for. It is secured by love’s promise, which will never be revoked.
Come and find grace’s bounty, friend, as you accept the invitation, and then replicate the offering.
Join me at the table and fellowship; commune in revered wonder and awe at the hope that He is setting before us. As we meet, let’s bind our hearts in prayer and in friendship tied to our faith in His holiness.
This week I have been challenged to remember the beauty of this invitation both in my heart and also my home. The details are working themselves out still, but I want to encourage you to seek to open both your hearts and your hearth as a way to minister to the people who have been placed in your path Ask the Lord how you can be a blessing and prepare an invitation of hope in the realm of influence He has set you in.
The more I think on this, I can’t help but remember Dorcas in Acts 9. She has always been an inspiration to me as I have read about how her grace offerings touched the people the Lord placed nearby. I love the idea of feeding people with good food, both the tangible and the heavenly. I have held back in this area of hospitality, though, for many reasons through the years. Most of them are bound by fear or the possibility of being rejected, but God is filling my heart with the promise of the invitation. He is showing me the invitation is about saying yes to grace and His call, not mine. I can’t wait to see what he will do as I purpose to follow his example of seeking guests to gather at my table more often.
The possibilities are endless, what will you do?
Perhaps it is a prayer group, or a once a month luncheon where you invite a special family for encouragement, or maybe a Titus 2 group where the generations meet to bless and strengthen. Perhaps you can encourage the members of your community, Bible Study, or Church to make blankets for a cause or shower shut ins with cards. Whatever you do, make it intentional.
The depth of His intent to bring us to the supper of the Lamb is covered in passionate hope and eager anticipation of our attendance. Be purposeful as you pursue the possibility of the invitations you will extend and be expectant that God will move through each willing heart to bring rest, release, and refreshment to each soul.
Will you join me in planning a Grace Table Offering? I’d love to hear your thoughts and your ideas on how to make this possible. I will have more about the Grace Table Offering, with Invitations and suggestions next week. You will be able to find them in the downloads section. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section and I will compile them with the idea list and send you a packet that will help you prepare for your Grace Table Party.
Praying you will hear his voice calling you, inviting you to the table of grace to receive rest and refreshment for your souls.
Linking up with grace givers this week at:
SDG Gathering, MADM Link Up, #TellHisStory, CoffeeForYour Heart, Wednesday Prayer Girls, Winsome Wednesday,Word Filled Wednesday, What you Wish Wednesday,Thought Provoking Thursday, Serving Joyfully, Thoughtful Thursdays,Missional Women, Fellowship Fridays, Blessing Counters, Essential Thing Devotions, Faith and Fellowship Bloghop, Saturday Soiree
I’m so glad to be your neighbor at SDG this week. I needed and love that Mt. 11:28-30 in the Amplified Bible. It’s a familiar one, but too easy to not do!
I love how the amplified version reveals a deeper meaning as I read scripture. It is hard to lay down those burdens because they are so comfortable, but it is necessary and what a blessing we find when we reach out and take hold of His yoke. So thankful you stopped by, Elizabeth.
Dawn, so grateful to be here this morning. I am so thankful that while I may forget His invitation, He graciously extends it to me again & again. Blessings!
Isn’t it amazing to find how close the spirit of thanks helps us to accept His invitation even more. I am glad you stopped by Joanne, just seeing your picture makes me smile.
There have been years of my life when I did not accept His invitation to come to the table because I didn’t feel deserving of the grace. What I found out later is I will never deserve it, but I am offered it any way. I think sometimes in our tangible lives of inviting people in, they don’t come because they don’t “feel” like they belong. But the truth is, they do because they are part of the body of Christ. Just as the Body must be intentional about welcoming, so must people coming in be intentional about allowing themselves to be fully welcomed.
That last sentence is just as important a truth to take hold of as all the others.. we have to be intentional. That has been the word rolling around in my head over and over. It is a part of our nature as Christ followers to intentionally choose the narrow way and carry the cloak of grace in order to set it upon someone else’s shoulders. Thanks for stopping by, Jen.
This is so beautiful! Thank you for the wonderful reminder of the welcoming grace of our Savior.
I always think of the 23rd Psalm in regard to the table of grace: “He prepares a table before me in the presence of my enemies. He anoints my head with oil and my cup overflows!”
Great reminder. We need to run to Him everyday. I do! I need it! My days go so much smoother. Thank you for this post!
“Attend as an honored guest, but accept in reverence and awe.” What a beautiful statement of humble faith. I love your message of receiving that we might give. Absolutely beautiful Dawn! Thanks so much for adding it to the Blessing Counters Linkup!
I really like your last image and the quote you have there. Fellowship with one another and with God are vital and I think a Grace Table Offering is a great idea. And it is one we should extend to non-believers as well, just as Jesus dined with sinners, showing love and grace.
Dawn, you are a beautiful writer! This post was so inspiring and something that I think so many people need to hear. There are times when I feel unworthy of God’s grace…undeserving…too messed up, but then I remember that this grace that God offers is freely given. There are no expectations attached to it. How thankful I am for His overflowing grace and my increasing ability to accept this gift.