God sets a table overflowing with grace and invites all who hunger and thirst to come and eat and be satisfied.
Yet, we claim the table for ourselves alone and then fail to sit still and drink deeply.
With generosity and steadfast love God provides bread enough for the journey and longs to satisfy our souls with peace.
Yet, we live in fear of not having enough and expending a lot of energy on much that does not satisfy.
God speaks to us even now, calling us to remember that we are a holy people, called to embody love, grace, and mercy wherever we find ourselves.
Yet, we spend a lot of time building walls, creating divisions, listening to voices that nurture fear and hatred.
Jesus walked a way of love, speaking hard words of truth, offering forgiveness without end.
Yet, we continue to deny our sins, hide our brokenness, and forget that we are loved more deeply than imagination can go.
In these quiet moments of worship, we recognize how much we thirst for God and how often we have failed to bear fruit as we try to live as if we have no God.
And God patiently waits for us to see the table set for us with such grace; the invitation never ends.
So now we repent honestly and openly.
We say aloud that we have been fearful and stingy with our neighbors and ourselves. We have judged others as unworthy to avoid confronting the broken places in our own lives. We have participated in racism, sexism, classism and other prejudices that separate us from others who bear the image of God. We have lived in fear of those who know God by different names. We have treated others and ourselves as though we have no value. We have not lived as beloved children of God. With humble hearts and open spirits, we ask for forgiveness.
God’s mercy is without limits. God’s love for us is not determined by our actions or failures to act, abilities or limitations, wealth or poverty, wholeness or brokenness. God claims each of us and calls us by name and offers forgiveness and mercy to all who come seeking.
Today we come to God’s table once more. We welcome God’s forgiveness as we try to forgive ourselves and others. We begin anew to love our neighbors and ourselves, to embody the gift of God’s love.
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RCL – Year C – Third Sunday in Lent – February 28, 2016
1 Corinthians 10:1-13