Reflections on being 'at the table'
Conversation - the act of speaking and listening, or listening and responding - between like minded folk or between people holding vastly differing convictions was brought to a new level of worth.
The phrase going round and round was about coming to the table, putting ideas on the table, being at the table, having a place at the table. If I had on my religious hat (no, I do not nor will I ever wear a baretta) I would think that the 'table' talked about would be the altar, 'the Lord's board'.
Yet even at this momentous Convention we were not talking about heavenly things; the table mentioned again and again was the bargaining table or perhaps the card table. What did you have to bargain with? What concession will you make if I give you this much? How much are you willing to wager that you can win this hand?
It pains my very being to think that - for this reason or that - I would not be allowed a place at the Lord's table: to eat and drink, to serve, to learn. Yet what power do I have to bargain with? What right have I to be at the table with the high rollers?
I'm a simple girl in many respects. As a baptized person I believe I have a place at the table because Jesus set the place for me - I also believe that everyone who has been baptized has a place there as well. Equally. I do not have the right to tell you to back away from the table or have the waiter take away the flatware because you make me uncomfortable. I don't have the right to tell you that you may not invite your brothers and sisters to dine with me.
It is not the long table in a board room; it's the Lord's table. Because we have each been adopted at baptism as is we each have a place at the Lord's table - it is big enough and bountiful enough for us all. Thanks be to God.