CORE-1 // Reconciliation // Pastor Kate Murphy

Scripture:  Luke 14:12-24

Dear Church,

Years ago, a neighbor in the Hickory Grove community told me that her kids had a special name for our church.  They called the Grove ‘the eat church,’ because they had been fed here so many times–at community meals, at vacation bible schools, at Freedom School and community festivals.  She told me they were always excited when she told them they could come to ‘the eat church.’

I love it.

Because lots of holy people would say that church is about more than eating, I don’t think Jesus would be one of them.

In the gospel of Luke, Jesus told a story at a dinner party about how the Kingdom of God was like a banquet where the invited guests didn’t show up and the host filled every empty seat with the poor, the lame, the maimed and the strangers. This Sunday, before we find our places at Jesus’ table, we’ll think about that story and what it means to believe Jesus’ words and to believe that we find salvation and union with God at the communion table.  In other words, those kids had it right.  We are, nothing more and nothing less than ‘the eat church.’

It’s the beginning of a new year of being church together, and I’ll share with you the word the Lord has laid on my heart for us as a community and how the Spirit might use it to guide and form us in 2024.


Pastor Kate

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