#LukeActs2014: Come Sup With God (Luke 14)

World Communion Altar Table, photo by Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia

World Communion Altar Table, photo by Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia

Luke 14:12-14 NIV
Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

In the story of the feeding of the 5,000 we see Jesus once again addressing the most essential, physical needs of his fellow human beings – hunger, thirst, companionship – and once again, breaking down every socially-constructed barrier that keeps us from eating with one another. He did the same thing when, much to the chagrin of the religious leaders, he dined with tax collectors and prostitutes and told his more well-to-do hosts that “when you give a banquet, invite the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed.” The English word companion, is derived from the Latin com (“with”) and panis (“bread”). A companion, therefore, is someone with whom you share your bread. – Rachel Held Evans, 5000 Companions

Luke 14:15-24 NRSV
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.’ ”

Sadly, the way we as Christians have historically responded to the gift of the Eucharist is to make sure that we understand it, then to make sure we put boundaries around it and then to make sure we enforce both the correct understanding and the correct boundaries. But on the night Jesus was betrayed he didn’t say “this is my body broken for you…UNDERSTAND this in remembrance of me….he didn’t say ACCEPT this or DEFEND this or BOUNDARY this in remembrance of me he just said do this in remembrance of me. – Nadia Bolz Weber, “This teaching is HARD, who can accept it” – a sermon on the Eucharist

The table is rich-laden; feast royally, all of you! The calf is fattened; let no one go forth hungry! Let all partake of the Feast of Faith. Let all receive the riches of goodness. Let none lament their poverty, for the Universal Kingdom has been revealed.
– John Chrysostom

Come Sup With God
by Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia
Meter 88.88 (LM)
Suggested tunes:
HURSLEY (United Methodist Hymnal #339) or
GIFT OF LOVE (United Methodist Hymnal #408)

Come sup with God all you who thirst
All you who hunger be the first
Feast on Christ’s Body and his Blood
O taste and see this meal of Love

Come children, elders, blind, and spent
Come foolish, able, indigent
Confess, repent, and then receive
Forgiveness flows abundantly

Come often, friend, for here is grace
made manifest in time and place
Christ’s mercy floods our brokenness
with healing balm and righteousness

Come to be changed. Come to be fed.
Come savor Christ, the Life, the Bread.
Drink deep the gift of healing poured
and leave a vessel of our Lord.

Sing Praise to Christ our Host and meal
Whose saving work provides the seal
for us once bound, now freed from death
to live for Christ with every breath

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Come Sup with God © 2000 Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia
You are welcome to use this work in a worship setting with proper attribution.
Please contact Lisa for information and permission to publish this work in any form.

#LukeActs2014: Luke 14

LukeActs logo week 14Reading for the week of April 6: Luke 14
Click Here for more information on the #LukeActs2014 Reading Plan

Consider reading the chapter in several translations and choosing a few verses to memorize. This week I chose:
Luke 14:11 NRSV
All who exalt themselves will be humbled,
and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Luke 14:13-14 NIV
When you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.

Main events of this chapter (with links to previous posts):
Healing on the Sabbath, The Man With Dropsy
Luke 14:1-6

Lessons in Humility and Inclusion
Luke 14:7-14
Quotes: Humility

Parable of the Great Banquet
Luke 14:15-24 (Matthew 22:2-14)
Hymn Text: Come Sup with God

The Cost of Discipleship
Luke 24:25-35
Quotes: Costly Discipleship

#LukeActs2014: Luke 13

LukeActs logo week 13Reading for the week of March 30: Luke 13
Click Here for more information on the #LukeActs2014 Reading Plan

Consider reading the chapter in several translations and choosing a few verses to memorize. This week I chose:
Luke 13:12-13 NIV
When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.

Luke 13:29 NIV
People will come from east and west and north and south,
and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God

Main events of this chapter (with links to previous posts):
Repent and Live
Luke 13:1-9

Healing on the Sabbath, The Crippled Woman
Luke 13:10-17

Parables of the Mustard Seed and the Yeast
Luke 13:18-20 (Mark 4:30-32; Matthew 13:31-33)
Quotes: Little Things, Great Love
Quotes and Prayer: Welcoming Branches

Who Will Be Saved?
Luke 13:22-30

Jesus Sorrows for Jerusalem
Luke 13:31-35 (Mathew 23:37-48)

#LukeActs2014: Luke 12

LukeActs logo week 12Reading for the week of March 23: Luke 12
Click Here for more information on the #LukeActs2014 Reading Plan

Consider reading the chapter in several translations and choosing a few verses to memorize. This week I chose:
Luke 12:8-9 NRSV
Jesus said, “Everyone who acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of God; 9 but whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.”

Luke 12:15 NRSV
Jesus said to them, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.”

Luke 12:32-34 NRSV
Jesus said, “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Luke 12:35-36 NRSV
Jesus said, “Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit; be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks.”

Main events of this chapter (with links to previous posts):
Warnings
Luke 12:1-7 (Matthew 10:26-33)

Acknowledging Jesus Before Others
Luke 12:8-12

Parable of the Rich Fool
Luke 12:13-21

Do Not Worry
Luke 12:22-34 (Matthew 6:25-33)
Quotes and Prayer: Worrying, Believing, Trusting
Worship Resource: Trusting God’s Provision
Quotes: Treasure in Heaven
Worship Resource: Lord of My Heart

Watch and be Ready
Luke 12:35-48 (Mathew 24:43-51; 25:1-13; Mark 13:33-37)
Quotes: Keep Awake

Division, Not Peace
Luke 12:49-53 (Matthew 10:34-36)
Quotes: What is Peace?

Good Judgment and Reconciliation
Luke 12:54-59

#LukeActs2014: Woe, Woe, Whoa (Luke 11:37-54)

repentance4Read Luke 11:37-53 NRSV

When Jesus wondered out loud if he would find faith on the earth when he returned (Luke 18:8), I thought he meant that evil would increase to such an extent that it would extinguish faith. And that may well be. But lately, I have added another thought to my mind about his words. I wonder if he might have meant that faith would be so misrepresented by those of us who allege to have it, people would not touch it with a ten-foot pole. But whatever Jesus meant, we can never abide the notion that faith may diminish as time goes by. And to whatever extent we contribute to this through our contaminated witness, all we can say is, “Lord, have mercy! Christ, have mercy!”
– Steve Harper, Contaminated Witness

A wise person once advised me, when you come across scriptures where Jesus is instructing or correcting the Scribes and the Pharisees, stop, listen, and allow the Holy Spirit to examine your own heart. We are often more like them than we want to admit. They were the “churched people” of their day. They too took their faith seriously, worshiped deeply, prayed and read the scriptures searching for God, answered a call and studied hard to prepare themselves for leading God’s people, bore the responsibility and sacrifice of leadership.

Reflection and meditation on these texts keep us humble and soft in God’s hands. We need God’s grace and leading to avoid falling into the same enslaving practices.

In this light, let us reflect on Jesus’ warnings from Luke 11, often referred to as “the woes.”

Opening Prayer: Psalm 51:10-13 NRSV
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you.

Verse 42: Woe to you … for you tithe mint and rue and herbs of all kinds, and neglect justice and the love of God
God reveal in me where have I focused on rules and details above you. Free me from the need to control myself, others, and access to your love and grace.

Verse 43: Woe to you … for you love to have the seat of honor … and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces
God reveal where my pride, ego and need for attention have become false idols. Forgive me and heal me of the judgmental attitudes which separate me from you and from others.

Verse 44: Woe to you! For you are like unmarked graves, and people walk over them without realizing it
God reveal every hidden thing I think and do which hurts others. Reveal my hypocrisy. Reveal where my attitudes and actions bringing contamination rather than community. Lord, have mercy upon me and raise me to new life in you.

Verse 46: Woe also to you … for you load people with burdens hard to bear, and you yourselves do not lift a finger to ease them.
God reveal how my actions and expectations are burdening others unnecessarily. Forgive me for placing myself above others and beyond accountability. Humble me and grow in me a love and solidarity with all people.

Verse 47: Woe to you! For you … are witnesses and approve of the deeds of your ancestors
God how am I perpetuating the prejudices and injustices of previous generations? Help me to join you in breaking this cycle.

Verse 52: Woe to you… for you have taken away the key of knowledge; you did not enter yourselves, and you hindered those who were entering.
God how am I making you and your ways confusing? Grant me a hunger for your truth and help my words to match my actions so others find you easily.

Closing Prayer: Psalm 51:10-13 NRSV
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you.

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Woe, Woe, Whoa © 2014 Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia
You are very welcome to use this in a worship or group setting with proper attribution.

Reading for the week of March 16: Luke 11
Click Here for more information on the #LukeActs2014 Reading Plan

For more information on the art, scripture translation and the use of this post in other settings, please refer to the copyright information page.

#LukeActs2014: Luke 11

LukeActs logo week 11Reading for the week of March 16: Luke 11
Click Here for more information on the #LukeActs2014 Reading Plan

Consider reading the chapter in several translations and choosing a few verses to memorize. This week I chose:
Luke 11:13 NRSV
Jesus said, “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Luke 11:17b NRSV
Jesus said, “Every kingdom divided against itself becomes a desert, and house falls on house.”

Luke 11:28 NRSV, adapted
Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and obey it!”

Luke 11:34-35 The Message
Your eye is a lamp, lighting up your whole body. If you live wide-eyed in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar. Keep your eyes open, your lamp burning, so you don’t get musty and murky.

Main events of this chapter (with links to previous posts):
Jesus on Prayer
Luke 11:1-13 (Matthew 6:9-13, 7:7-11)
Quotes: What is Prayer?
Quotes: Be the Change (Your Kingdom Come)
Devotion: Thy Will Be Done
Sermon: Love One Another, Receiving Gifts

Jesus on Beelzebub and Demons
Luke 11:14-26 (Matthew 12:22, 24-29, 43-45; Mark 3:23-27)
Quotes: A few thoughts on Demons
Quotes: Good and Evil

The Sign of Jonah
Luke 11:27-32 (Matthew 12:39-42)

Be Full of Light
Luke 11:33-36 (Matthew 6:22-23)
Quotes: Reflecting God’s Light

Beware Being Religious: The Six Woes
Luke 11:37-54
Sermon: Look Like the One You Love

#LukeActs2014: Rejoice Wisely (Luke 10:1-24)

rejoice-romans 5 2Based on Luke 10:1-24, Jesus sending the seventy two,
especially Luke 10:19-20 NIV

Jesus said, “I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

Jesus
You entrust us with your greatness
Lips to proclaim your peace
Your Kingdom drawing all, drawing near
Hands to heal
Freedom of simplicity
Authority over evil
Power over the enemy

It’s so easy to lose you among the wonders and signs
In thinking your attention, your affection
Only offered for results (Look Jesus!)
In celebrating ourselves instead of you (Look what we did!)

It’s so easy to lose you in the crush of refusal
In the lack of fruit though the sewing was faithful
In the grumbling, the apathy
The sand sticks to our sandals
and our souls

It’s so easy to lose you
Our worthiness tied to the work

Remind us again and again, Son of Righteousness
Rejoice only in The Relationship
Your name written on the Family Tree
On the palm of God’s hand

Teach us, Jesus
A hallelujah in every season
For we are yours

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Rejoice Wisely © 2014 Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia
You are very welcome to use this in a worship or group setting with proper attribution.

Reading for the week of March 9: Luke 10
Click Here for more information on the #LukeActs2014 Reading Plan

For more information on the art, scripture translation and the use of this post in other settings, please refer to the copyright information page.