In the Gospel lesson taken from the fourteenth chapter of Luke verses 1, 7-14, Jesus teaches about seeking honor. In the parable verses 8-10 read “When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest someone more distinguished than you be invited by him, and he who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Give your place to this person,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you. ‘Friend, move up higher.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you.” Pastor Bruno then emphasized verse 11: “For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
Pastor Bruno told of instances where people tend to exalt themselves to impress others and gain recognition for themselves. Examples might be the people who drive the most expensive, flashy cars or live in the biggest and most elaborate homes, or brag about themselves and their accomplishments. Pastor told the congregation, “Don’t think about self first. Put God first in your lives.” Service is more important in God’s kingdom than status. Rather than seeking prestige, look for a place to serve God.”
How are we to humble ourselves? Verses 12-14 read, Jesus said “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.” Serve others first and reach out to others less fortunate. God opens his kingdom to everyone.
“Humble yourselves. Think about what Jesus did for you. Jesus allowed himself to be tortured, hung on a cross, and he died on the cross for us to take away our sins and give us eternal life. Put Jesus first in your lives.” stated Pastor. Luke 14:11: “For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
Let us pray. Almighty and everlasting God, You are always more ready to hear than we are to pray and to give more than we either desire or deserve. Pour out upon us the abundance of Your mercy, forgiving us of those things which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merit of Your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Sunday morning worship services at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Runge begin with the tolling of the bell by the children at 8:30 a.m. followed by fellowship. All are invited to come and worship.