My mom had the gift of hospitality. She loved to host our entire family, especially during holidays. I remember her setting the table a couple of days in advance of a large gathering. Mom would carefully set out the fine china, place the flatware just so, and case the cloth napkins in festive napkin rings. Even though she would tire herself with the details and effort, this was her display of love that also brought her great joy.

 

Time and again, our Savior, the Creator of the world, willingly put Himself in a posture of servanthood. This just blows my mind! Jesus turned everything upside down! The King of kings flipped the script. Jesus didn’t come expecting followers to bow down and serve Him as the royalty He was. Instead, He continuously modeled humility and servant leadership. He washed feet, prepared breakfast on a beach, and served meals.

For even the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve others, and to give His life as a ransom for many. Matthew 20:28

So, what is the table that David is referring to in today’s reading? What table is God preparing?

I wonder if he was referring to the communion table. As recorded in Matthew 26, Jesus participated in a Passover meal with His disciples, which is commonly known as the Last Supper. This took place just three days before the crucifixion.

While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” Matthew 26:26-28

What a powerful moment! Jesus used the elements on the table as representation of His sacrifice. He was trying to prepare His followers for what was to come, and to invite them into the “new” He was fulfilling. Jesus flipped the script indeed! Now, we see the Good Shepherd taking on the role of the sheep. Jesus presents Himself as the Lamb of God. Perhaps the Messiah was the “table” that God was preparing since the beginning of time?

 

This ties in beautifully with the beginning of David’s psalm. He was describing a life without lack, one that is full and satisfying. David was confident in God’s sufficiency, and recognized that anything God chose to prepare for him would be perfect. The Old Testament is filled with prophecies and signs that God was preparing the world for the arrival of His Son.

Jesus is the perfect model of God’s love, and desires to meet our needs. He does so for His name’s sake because each act of service brings Him joy. His followers are commissioned to do likewise. Just as preparing a celebration table for family brought my mom joy, we can express love through acts of service.

Even in the midst of a quarantine…

  • How have you seen love on display recently?
  • What is one small thing you can do today to serve and love another?

Jesus, Thank You for choosing to love us as our humble and gracious Host. Open our hearts to Your sufficiency. In a time marked with what we don’t have, help us to focus on what we do have. Help us to focus on You. Reveal ways we can express Your love through acts of service. Amen.