Our family’s table originally belonged to my grandparents. From my childhood, I have tons of memories at that table, my cousins and I on one end, where we secretly filled our plates with jello and skipped the creamed peas. Several years ago, the table was passed on to me and it’s where we gather daily, creating a new generation of memories.
The table is special to me, but it’s not really about the table. The best tables are the ones that hold a place for you. The size and shape don’t matter as much as the people who gather around them.
On the night He was betrayed, Jesus sat with His disciples around a stranger’s table. Peter passionately proclaimed his loyalty to Jesus. Judas held the weight of thirty coins in his pocket. James and John jostled for the most important seats. There were no perfect stories around the table that night. They’d been together long enough to see one another’s imperfections—to appreciate their quirks and laugh together easily. Surely they sensed Jesus’ heaviness as He talked to them.
Even as His sorrow escalated, Jesus made room at the table for them all— the brash, the innocent, the guilty, the proud, and the humble. He broke the bread and shared the wine, He offered His body and blood to these men who had left everything to follow Him. All that had needed to be said was said. And now, at the end of it all, they were at the table together.
One last supper.
They would leave the table to be scattered. Jesus would alone face the darkest night of the world. The disciples would discover just how weak and needy they were. But the power of that night reminds us of our need for God’s redeeming love, and His promise of a new day.
My friend, there is room at the table for you. No matter what you’ve done or where you find yourself, there’s a place for you. You don’t have to pretend or perform. Come with your sorrow and joy. Come with your unanswered questions. Christ welcomes you just as you are.