Luke 14:12-14 "He said also to the one who had invited him, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
Reflection. I like cooking meals for friends and family. Indeed, I have been told I do a pretty good slow roasted belly pork with great crackling Del Malam. Slow cooked breast of lamb is a favourite as well. I get a reward - their 'eating pleasure' makes me feel good! What does Jesus's teaching say to this? That folk enjoy my cooking brings an instant reward. Is it wrong to give done friends the gift of a good feast? Should I change my invitation habits and have the delayed gratification of being 'repaid at the resurrection of the righteous?'
Sometimes Jesus's teaching really causes us to re-think, to re-evaluate, and to re-structure our lives. How about this, when you come for a meal at our place don't feel you have to invite us back to yours. To give and not to expect reward is not often the way of the world we inhabit. We live in a world of 'you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.' Jesus calls to do good to those who might even harm us.
Oh, and a little humour to finish. Celebrity chefs have much to answer for. The two cuts of meat mentioned above used to be the cheapest. Now they appear on menus in swanky, fine dining restaurants. There is a special place reserved for TV chefs...and it is not heavenly😊😅.
Prayer. Lord Jesus, thank you for delighting in good food and good company. Help us to understand the privilege of having plenty. Help to share. In your name. Amen.