Our kitchen table was free. Yes, that’s right, free. When I moved back to Texas from Mobile, Alabama, I sold(or gave away) my dinette because it was hideous and I didn’t “love it”. When Dennis and I married, we had pretty much everything except a kitchen table. I am pretty resourceful so I began scouring Craigslist and found an antique dinette for sale…the price kept getting lower. A student from UT was moving to New York and he just wanted the table moved. He told me if we stopped by that day, he would give us the dinette. He also told us, he mother bought it in Fredericksburg. We ended up with an antique table from Fredericksburg for free. It is round…I always wanted a round table because in my way of thinking, no one is on the “wrong side”. Everyone is in the cirlce. It’s cute too.
Yesterday a friend called and told me she needed to talk. The evening ended around our kitchen table with us praying for her future. Over the weekend, a friend came over for a party and the evening ended with her speaking into our lives. It’s not the kitchen table so much as the home.
I saw a sign recently that said, “Our house is a little house…God knows where we live”. I love the idea that God knows where we live. Even more, I love the idea that we welcome Him into that place.
We have hosted many dinners at our little kitchen table. We have had visitors from as far away as Nigeria and close to home as family. We have discussed politics, religion, vision, dreams, death of dreams….rarely has a subject been avoided.
We have eaten from the finest cuisine to the most simple…it all fed our souls. Who doesn’t like biscuits (besides Dennis – unless they have meat in them somehow)?
There have been times in my life when I made plans that I would go out and minister to those in the “most” need; those who had really lost their way. Plans made to reach the homeless and the destitute; those on drugs or bound to alcohol. My idea of those “most in need” is not necessarily God’s idea. (His ways are higher than mine). I had to, as Mary Englebright says, “Bloom where I’m planted”. I had to begin seeing and ministering to the needs that God sent my way. At times there have been some hard cases….it turns out it is much harder for a relgious man or woman to see their own issue than it is for those who have hit bottom. It turns out, the people we know are the ones with the drug problem, the alcohol problem, the sex addition. We are looking for the hard cases and they are sitting right at our kitchen table or on the pews at our church.
In many cases, the most desperate people are the ones who have been wounded by a church or church leader. If only I could wrap my arms around each one and tell them, “God loves you and approves of you. He still has plans for your life.”
Why do we think we know who needs God the most? It is time to start ministering to the people sitting around our kitchen table. It is time to start ministering to the people God sends into our lives. This includes family members.
How often do we overlook our own family members? These are the people we know best and love the most but our prayers for them are minimal and we often minimize the pain in their lives. What good is it for me to teach the church if I don’t teach my own children? If my children do not walk in integrity and righteousness, what good have I done? My first ministry obligation is to my family.
Who is at your kitchen table?