Drinking Wine in the dark

This past weekend I participated in a wedding weekend of some very good friends. We stayed at a camp together where the event was more like a retreat then a one day event. People came from all over to celebrate these two lives becoming one. It was so powerful. It was beautiful. And, it spoke of covenant relationship in a way that smelled of Jesus.

The wedding took place at a camp in the mountains of Colorado. The setting was idyllic. The wedding seeped of goodness and the people who gathered around them formed a rich community that spoke of their character and the Lord’s goodness.

I was asked to watch over the course of the weekend for God. See what story He might be telling and then to tell that story at a worship service held at the camp Sunday  morning. I watched. It was evident to me God was on the move. He showed up in the beauty of the surroundings, in the love that permiated not only the relationship between the bride and groom but all who gathered, He was evident in a forceful wind that settled upon the wedding ceremony and blew upward out of the trees.  God was there and it was powerful to observe.

I also saw evidence of God in the relationships made and friends united over the course of the weekend. There was no other way to describe it than to read a section of Romans 12.

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.[c] Do not be conceited.

17Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”[d]says the Lord. 20On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”[e] 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

I couldn’t paint a better picture of what I observed between people and it was overwhelming. You see, I came to the wedding quite dry. I was so thirsty for relationship that oozed Jesus and I collided with it in every moment.

Throughout the story of scripture the banqueting table was used as a metaphor for God’s blessing and I think it was fitting that the culmination of the wedding celebration was a set of two feasts. One that celebrated the love my two friends had for one another and one that reminded us of the love Jesus has for us as we ate the bread and drank the wine Sunday morning. Both feasts were a part of His blessing and it was evident that lives were changed because of their coming to the table.

In Psalm 23 the psalmist speaks of the Lord preparing a table before us in the presence of our enemies. That means in the midst of getting beat up or right before the enemy strikes the Lord sets a table of blessing to remind us that He alone is good and that we can taste the goodness of the Lord even in the face of darkness. This being true, I believe that as we walk with Jesus that He’ll want us to come to his table and feast daily.

I don’t know what coming to the table looks like for everyone and I do believe the table isn’t always easy to notice, but I can tell you that there is always a table to which to come. Then, when we come to the table, we who are thirsty, we are filled.

Are you thirsty? Are you in the presence of an enemy? If so, ask Jesus to give you eyes to see the table he’s set for you and go. Go to the table of the Lord. And you’ll collide with a blessing more rich than you’d ever imagine.

Have you ever experienced a blessing in the midst of darkness?

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