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Building a Bigger Table, Part I

 “When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.” Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.” John 2:9–11

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

This past week I had the delight of attending the Northwest Minnesota Synod Theological Conference at Fair Hills in Detroit Lakes.  At the conference, Rev. Dr. Karoline Lewis further developed the theme at our June Synod Assembly, “Building a Bigger Table” through a study of the Gospel of John.  It’s a great theme to engage us in reflecting upon how we understand our call to be church together and for the sake of a world in need.  These next few months, I’d like to use this space to invite you to consider what it means for us to “build a bigger table” as Augustana Lutheran Church.

In the first meal in John’s gospel, Jesus famously turns water into wine as a sign of God’s abundant blessing!  Jesus comes to the table as a guest, rather than the host, and yet still ensures that God’s blessing is literally poured out for the sake of all in attendance at the very time of need as the host’s wine has run out.

I’d invite you to consider:

  • How have you found guests and visitors to unexpectedly bless your life?
  • How has God met you during your time of need, when you’ve felt that you’re running on empty?  How might God have provided for you in unexpected ways?
  • How have you been called, like Jesus, to bless others as guests at their tables?
  • When the host runs out of resources, like the bridegroom runs out of wine, it can be seen as a great shame, yet it’s by Jesus’ grace that this oversight is covered. How might you extend that same grace to others in your life?
  • What tables has God set before you to bless those you sit across from—at work, at home, at church? Who is missing from those tables—and how might you extend the table to them—essentially, “making room” for them at the table?

All this table talk is making me hungry!  God bless you in your call to ministry!  Know that I’m grateful to be serving alongside you.

Don’t forget to mark these dates on your calendar!!

Acolyte Guild Installation—Sunday, October 6.  We have 10 acolytes serving together in the guild this year!  Come to recognize and affirm them in their ministry of bearing the Light of Christ during our worship services and throughout the world!

3rd Grade Bible Presentation—Sunday, October 27.  As we celebrate Reformation Sunday and Martin Luther’s translating the Bible into the language people could understand, we will present our Third Grade Students a gift Bible from Augustana!  Come to celebrate the on

going reformation of the church and to affirm the importance of making Bible reading a regular part in our lives!

Serving Jesus together,

Pastor Ben