Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child. Have fun!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

A place at the table

The phrase "a place at the table" is one that has resonated well with me for many years now, even before finding the book that is our current focus for Lent. In fact, I think it was my fascination with the phrase and it's implications that drew me to the book.

The Good Doctor and I have made a conscious effort to live our lives always with "a place at the table". It has looked differently at different times. We've been better at it during some times than others. Many times I've struggled with the Good Doctor's spontaneity in having a place at the table (I still cringe when I remember him telling people, "Come anytime! The door is always open.) while he has struggled with my desire to plan ahead and my need to have everything "just right". But through the years of choosing to have open lives and an open home, I can look back and say in every circumstance, "It is good." While addictions, mental illness, history with the prison system, choices made, or lifestyle lived may separate us, our common brokenness and humanness always bring us together. We were all created with a need for community. Yes, even introverts like me.

While at times we may have been taken advantage of and other times we (mostly me) have felt overwhelmed with the burden of hospitality, we've come to know that ease, self-gratification, and prestige are never part of the equation.

Look who Jesus made room for at the table:. the disabled, the ill, children and women, the lowly in society (shepherds and tax collectors), people who would eventually lead to His death.

Making a place at the table doesn't mean I have to agree with those who come in. It doesn't mean I get to argue my point or to speak in a condescending, disparaging, or demeaning way. Making a place at the table means I simply love. It means I love in spite of differences. It means I see myself as a servant and give others a higher position than myself. It means I will listen; to hear another's story with true interest. It means I'm willing to sacrifice myself; to get my hands dirty in service. Making a place at the table means that anything that has been given to me, I hold loosely in order to better give it up for others.

Ultimately, like Jesus, making a place at the table means I have to be prepared to give my life for others. Judas, sitting at Jesus' table, set into motion a series of events that led Jesus to the cross. And He willingly went to the cross for Judas. For me.  For everyone at my table.

It's hard. So hard. The desire for self-preservation, for comfort, for being "safe", is strong. But it's not Christ-like. So this Lenten season, as I fast from desires that are strong, I am trying to replace them with Christ's love and grace and sacrifice - for everyone who finds a place at my table.

Lent

A chance to
Stop
Breathe
Rest
Ask whose we are
And why we are here

A time to
Humble ourselves
Take less and share more
Make room at the table
And be transformed into Christ-likeness

A season to
Surrender our hearts and lives
Remember the miracles and grace of God
Follow Jesus on His journey to the cross

And discover for what we might be willing to die


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