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Wednesday, October 29, 2014
This last winter we joined our friends Ron and Bonnie Hoover for a
dinner party in their home. The table settings were elegant!
Listen to this
"There's Always A Place At The Table"
"And the servant said, ‘Sir, what you commanded has been done, and
still there is room.' And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to
the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may
be filled" (Luke 14:22).
"Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb. These are true words of God" (Revelation 19:9).
He'd gotten used to living
On the outside looking in
Lonely was his only constant friend.
So when the invitation came
That clearly bore his name;
He hardly could believe the words he read:
There is always a place at the table.
a memorable meal in your life. For most that will prompt a memory of a
great feast in a luxurious location with an overabundance of delicious
food. But even more important, it's the people we visit with around the
table that makes the meal even
more special. The photo to the left is a holiday meal at our home with
family over 25 years ago when we lived in St. Marys, PA. (Obviously,
this is a photo snapped before Brooksyne delivered the food to the
table. Click for
larger view). My Mom and Dad are now gone and all those little kids
have grown into young adults and the young adults have become ... old
also consider an experience most of us have had, one that undoubtedly
many of our readers now have. A place at the table for a missing
loved one. That may be for a number of reasons, perhaps the loved one
is now deceased, or away serving on foreign soil or in the military.
But today we especially consider those who feel the lingering pain that
is due to an absentee child. The frequency of estrangement between
young adult children and their parents has greatly increased in recent
years. The inconsolable pain that it causes parents and the loss to
both generations is immeasurable. Like the prodigal they have departed.
place at the table brings unspeakable heartache. In fact in preparing
this message we prayerfully considered several we know who are enduring
this kind of ongoing heartache.
Perhaps you are reading this and will readily acknowledge that you are the estranged one. We
earnestly pray this message may be a prompting for reconciliation, whether it be to your heavenly Father or those who love you on this earth. For some it may be both.
Jesus told the Parable of the Great Banquet in Luke 14:15-24.
The overall message of the parable is about the excuses and outright
rejection of many in regard to entering God's Kingdom. That's
still true today!
The Master instructs his servants to go out
with invitations to a great banquet. Many who were invited made
excuses as to why they couldn't come. How sad the excuses that keep us
from the Great Banquet Table or the table of those who love us and long
for our presence.
She'd made so many choices
That had torn her life apart
And hurt the very ones she loved the most.
She didn't even know where someone could begin
Until she got this message from the host:
There is always a place at the table
The banquet invitation was extended, "Go out quickly to the
streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and crippled and
blind and lame.’" The servants returned to their master with the
report found in the daily text, "What you ordered has been done, but
there is still room."
Yes indeed, there's still room at the table. And today the Master's servants
continue to extend the invitation to a great banquet. Scores of
devoted missionaries, evangelists and pastors are proclaiming, "There's
still room." Dedicated lay people are taking this message to
their world today, "There's still room." Through this internet
ministry Brooksyne and I declare to those who visit this page, "There's still room!"
And of course many people continue to make excuses. What a great
truth is found in verse 23 where we read of God's desire, "That my house may be filled."
Let me ask you today. Have you accepted the invitation or are you
still making excuses? If you have accepted the invitation for your place at the table are
you joining the servants in faithfully proclaiming, "Still there is
There is always a place at the table,
There's a feast that's now waiting all your own,
Your place is set each time the family gathers;
It will never be the same til you're home.
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Jesus, the theme of the great banquet parable calls to mind another
parable where You challenge the conventional way of thinking while
forthrightly telling Your listeners, "The first shall be last and the
shall be first." We see a lot of people who've been invited to the
banquet table to eat of the Bread of Life. Some have tasted and
seen that the Lord is good while others continue to crave the pleasures
of this world instead. You are the Bread of Heaven that nurtures our
spiritual hunger and the Living Water that quenches our eternal thirst!
Our lives will never be the same as they were before we drew from Your
well of salvation. Since Your well is bottomless with Your supply
unending we invite all who seek eternal life, for there is still room
because You are not willing that any should perish but that all would
come to repentance. We especially pray for wayward loved ones
today, particularly those who have abandoned their family roots.
Father, lead them back to their home where there is always a place at
the table and in the hearts of those who remain. We're so thankful
You're in the restoration business where hearts are mended and families
reunited for Your glory. We thank You in advance for answered prayer. Amen.
Early in our marriage we purchased an old 48”x48” oak dining table for
$50.00 at an estate sale that had five 12” leafs (but not the
self-storing kind.) We later found a table almost identical to ours
advertised for $10.50 in a 1906 Sears catalog, so our table has
actually appreciated in monetary value over the past century and has seated many, many people!
Upon the initial purchase the table was an absolute mess with the
laminate top and carved legs etched in deep scratches and black stain. Multiple colors
of stains were smeared over the wood. The leafs had ancient linoleum
glued over the oak which looked rather hideous. I saw little hope for
the pitiful table before Brooksyne spent a good month stripping,
sanding, and staining it. Jeff Worrall, a long-time friend of ours,
assisted her with the structural restoration and even I got on board by
drilling new holes and inserting better fitting dowels for the leafs.
Fully extended it comfortably seats 14 people. As I consider the photos
I have taken through the years, including many used on this site, it’s
pretty remarkable to consider how many have eaten and fellowshipped
around this old oak table. It occured to me that we have had thousands
of people joining us around this table in the last nearly 30
years. Today's photo was taken 20 years ago of my family who joined us
for Christmas in 1988.
Our dining room table as originally sold in the Sears catalog!
(From 1906 as we recall)
snapped this photo in Strasburg this morning. Expecting to see a dog
come out of the doghouse she broke into laughter when she spotted two
chickens (or roosters) strutting out. If not a "dog" house they're
certainly downsizing "chicken" houses these days.
This morning I observed a hard-working landscaping crew and was intrigued by the
name so I asked. Benjamin Stoltzfus (right in photo), is the owner of
the company and testified of his faith in Christ and shared his
testimony with me. As I suspected Creation is referring to God's
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"There's Always a Place At the Table" Video
Gaither Vocal Band I had not heard of this song before last night
when our friend Tommy Carpenter who serves in Belize mentioned it in an email: "It was through this song that I
led a street vendor to the Lord here in Belize a few weeks ago. The old
man broke down crying at my car window!! And asked me to pray with him.
"He Has Forgiven Me" Video Damaris Carbaugh
"Come Home" Video Travis Cottrell
"Softly and Tenderly" Video Guy Penrod
On a lighter, non-spiritual note:
Kansas City is in the news for sports fans. I grew up in that area and
join my home town in excitement with tonight's deciding world series
game. Here's a song that I recall from my childhood. "Kansas City Star" Video Roger Miller
to Stephen &
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am created by God to bring
Him glory. Through God’s Son, Jesus Christ, I have been
redeemed and I make it my life’s goal to honor God through my
faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for
Encouragement Net 495
Church Road Mount
C. Weber All
the weak things in the world,
That no flesh will glory
in His presence."