When Jesus came to Earth, He came to a story that was already being written. A story filled with characters and teams who had agendas, beliefs, and for the most part, despised each other. Teams, or parties, that would fight in the streets, commit murder, and slander one another to further their own belief system.
Jesus invited them all to His table and taught them the most important thing of all: It’s not about your agenda; it’s about the person sitting across from you. It’s about love. Jesus invited them to the table and taught them table manners.
1. Has Jesus ever challenged, frustrated, or confused you? If so, what was it about Jesus that made you feel that way?
2. Has there ever been a time when Jesus was on the opposing side of your own beliefs/opinions? What issue did he oppose you on? Have you resolved that tension or is it still something you’re wrestling with?
3. In Sunday’s message, Pastor Trevor said Jesus didn’t fit in with any of the political or religious parties that existed at the time. Instead, He made His own. What implications does that have for us today?
4. When we sit at the table with people who are different than us it’s important to remember that we are representatives of Jesus. With that in mind, what are some things you may say or do that need to change in order for you to better represent Jesus?
5. Paul said that our words should always be full of grace and seasoned with salt (or truth). What does that mean? Do you personally find that to be a difficult thing to do? What tensions does that idea — a lot of grace with a little truth — create?
Invite people to your table.
Don’t insult them, ask them questions, be gracious, and be winsome.