Rev. Dr. Niveen Sarras
Rev. Dr. Niveen Sarras
Luke 14:1, 7-14.
September 1, 2019
Today, Jesus gives us a lesson on humility and hospitality. He invites us to be humble and not to strive for a place of honor, prestige, and admiration because humility brings us these things. In other words, humility brings you to the place of honor. Jesus was concerned about the troubling of his popularity following his miracles, particularly the miracle of Transfiguration and feeding the multitudes. He refused to become a king or to seek authority or prestige. He is an excellent example of a humble person who lived his life, not for himself but for us. “Following Jesus Christ is not about positions of honor or authority in his kingdom; it is about embracing a life dedicated to loving one another as he has loved us.”
Humility and hospitality go hand in hand. Hospitality always requires humility. When we are humble, we open our hearts to share our resources with the poor, strangers, blind, and lame. Humility opens our mind and soul to our struggling neighbor. Humility is God's gift to those who ask for it. It is a divine gift that helps us to walk side by side with our neighbor who is struggling to put food on the table and care for their kids when they may be working three jobs.
Many people in this world whose lives and hope to find a small amount of happiness are intertwined with what we think, say, and do. God did not create us to live for ourselves. God did not create me to live for Niveen and only Niveen. God created us to be responsible for each other.
The poor and the disadvantage need the leader of the Pharisees to provide them a meal to survive. His wealthy guests did not need his food. The poor need the rich to work with them to eliminate poverty. And the rich need to remember not to take their privileges and resources for granted.
We need each other. This is a fact that we cannot ignore. We need each other not only when we face financial crisis, but also when we question our relationship with somebody who is dear to us, or when a member of our family or a friend is sick or is living in an abusive relationship, or when a friend cannot handle the stress at their workplace. There are more and more examples. But the point is that your humility is key to your relationships. Your humility helps you to practice hospitality to your neighbors and friends.
Hospitality entails opening your heart to your friends. It also involves listening to your neighbor, their struggles, their pains in every place the Lord Jesus sends you. This act of hospitality is an act of grace. It is an act of love and care. A touch of kindness can make a difference in your neighbor’s life.
The 8-year old boy Christian Moore has inspired me with his touch of kindness. This little boy comforts his classmate with autism on the first day of school. His humility and hospitality were very significant. No wonder that his heartwarming photo was all over the news. That little boy Christian teaches us to practice gracious hospitality to those who are in need.
Jesus touches our hearts every day. His gracious hospitality is for you every single day. His gracious hospitality is available to you in breaking the bread and drinking the wine. His humility opens to you a great banquet where everybody is welcome to join. Jesus also practices his gracious hospitality at every moment when you go to him to throw yourself into his arms because you know he is the one who is gladly willing to carry you when the road is rough, and your burden is heavy.
Tuesday, September 3, 2019 2:08:00 PM