Central Baptist Church of Westerly
16 Elm Street, Westerly, RI   02891
Phone: (401) 596-4929   

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There is a Table Set for You

July 5, 2017
Dear Friends,

I hadn't thought much about the dinner until I arrived. There was quite a
line. Everyone was all smiles. The first hint that something was amiss as I
arrived at the Luther Rice Society Dinner came as I noticed the Senior
Director of Development greeting everyone at the door.

He looked down at my badge as I approached.  I said, "Hello, my name is
Cal Lord." He responded courteously and thanked me for coming.  A few
minutes later I met another man greeting guests.  He said, "Hi Clayton.
I'm sorry.  They had your name spelled wrong.

I smiled.  He mentioned something about switching an F and an L. I
didn't understand.  Then I reached the registration table.  They didn't
have a packet for me.  Then they found it under the name, Clayton Ford.  
An L had been changed to an F.  "That's mine," I said.

As the program began the host shared that all of us had been invited
because of our generous support of $5,000 or more to International
Ministries.  Looking around the table I noticed that I was sitting with
a number of prominent denominational officials.  I gulped.

It was clearly a case of mistaken identity.  I wondered. "How could that
be?"  I had received an invitation.  Someone high up thought I belonged
there.  Then the host shared that some of us were invited because we
represented churches that had generously supported missions.

As I wiped the sweat from my brow, it struck me that I had experienced
the same kind of amazing grace that all of us have known in Christ.  I
was there enjoying the dinner because someone else had given sacrificially.  
Because of their generosity, I was being blessed.

Jesus tells a parable about another banquet in Luke 14.  It starts out as an
exclusive affair. It ends with the doors being thrown open and all being
invited in.  It is a metaphor for what took place on the cross.  Jesus paid
the price and we were all invited to enjoy the benefits.

Instead of food and drink, Jesus offers forgiveness and new life.  The price
of admission is simply accepting his invitation.  So don't stand outside.  
Come on in.  There is a seat at the table for you with your name on it.  
How do I know?  It's right here next to mine.

God bless! See you in Church.

Pastor Cal Lord's Weekly Epistle
Pastor Cal's
Weekly Epistle

Every week Pastor Cal
writes a weekly column
for the Spirit Page of
the Norwich Bulletin.

He also sends it out to
members and friends of
the church via e-mail.

E-mail him at
calstigers@gmail.com if
you want to be added to
the weekly list.
Pastor Cal's