Who's Ready To Feast?

Jon Burgess


“Each year every man in Israel must celebrate these three festivals: the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the Festival of Harvest, and the Festival of Shelters. On each of these occasions, all men must appear before the LORD your God at the place he chooses, but they must not appear before the LORD without a gift for him. All must give as they are able, according to the blessings given to them by the LORD your God.”

Deuteronomy‬ ‭16:16-17‬ ‭NLT‬‬


God establishes a rhythm in life that allows for the intersection of faith, family and friends. Instead of telling His people to attend long boring lectures or instructing all to meditate on their navels, He commands them all to party. How awesome is that we serve a God that tells us to have fun together? His command is not just fun once or twice, but often. This isn't one of those lame parties either where everyone stands around looking at each other awkawardly while trying to figure out a polite way to leave as soon as possible. No, these feasts and festivals "will be a time of great joy for all." That's right! This isn't just a party for the cool kids either. There is no "sitting at the kids table" in this scenario. Everyone gets in on the fun. Everyone gets on the dance floor whether they can dance or not. That's good news for a size 13, two left feet, kind of guy like me. What's the reason for all this frivolity and feasting? It's pretty simple: "God is good. God is good to us. Everything good we have has come from God. So, let's get together and give back to the God who has given us so much!" That sounds like a great description of a church service!


There are so many reasons I love going to church! The one I want to focus on today flows straight out of these scriptures. God chooses the people. God chooses the place. God fills the space with His presence. We fill the place with what we've been given. That's right! No one shows up empty handed. Everyone has something to offer, as much as we are able, because we all serve a generous God who gives good gifts to men! Paul describes it this way in 1 Corinthians 12:4-7: "There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in differ ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help the other." Whether it's time, talent or treasure we have been gifted so we all have something to give when we come together. No wonder God embedded these celebrations within a feast. The best church services are potlucks of grace through God's people's. God opens up the table and we all bring our best recipe and enjoy, not only want we brought, but what God brings through everyone else. Every week I get excited to see what God is cooking up and serving out through His people at the New Hope potluck which we call the weekend services. I thoroughly enjoy the wide and varied flavors of the Savior seen in every face, heard in every song, felt in every hug, witnessed in every act of service. You see, at God's table, every dish we bring is a gift from Him and a gift to Him and therefore every person matters. When someone decides to not show up at service we all miss out on the unique flavor that person brings. That's why God was so emphatic that "all must give as they are able, according to the blessings given to them by the Lord your God." The bottom line is that this weekends party in the presence of the Lord needs you in it! You have a lot to offer. Don't leave it at home! Bring what you have to the table this weekend at New Hope as we celebrate our generous God!


I pray no one would miss out on what You do to and through them this weekend at New Hope and every church that bears Your Name! I'm so thankful I serve a God that loves to party with His people! You are so good to me. I pray that I would not hold back what You have so generously given to me! I want to leave it all on the table and watch what You do with what I bring! Thank You Lord for this amazing O'hana of faith that I get to feast with every week!

Devotions for March 11

Deuteronomy 16,17,18
Psalms 38
Galatians 2

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