This series focuses on praying for our Native American brothers and sisters, particularly those living on reservations.
[These devotions come from Jesus Culture's "Faith for Your City" Devotion Series with some alterations]
Need to start at the beginning? Read Week 1 here.
At My Father's Table
Read: John 14
There are many rooms in my Father's house, and I am going to prepare a place for you. I would not tell you this if it were not so. (John 14:2)
If you were inviting the entire population of a reservation to dinner, you would want to make sure there was plenty of food and room for everyone to eat comfortably. Jesus is way ahead of you.
Jesus has already made a spot for us at His Father's table, and there is room for many more to join the party. Heaven is a large place, larger than we can possibly imagine, and Jesus wants it full! He can't wait to feed, nurture, and restore ALL NATIONS!
The food is ready, the tables are set, but we need more guests!
In the Parable of the Wedding Feast, Jesus tells of a king who pleaded with his servants to "go to the main streets and invite to the feast as many people as you find... good and bad alike." (Matthew 22:9-10) We don't have to be picky with who we invite, either. We should be constantly inviting and gathering more Native people into the Kingdom.
UNfrotunately, this isn't always as easy as it should be. We don't all comprehend the Gospel in the same way, based on our own experiences and culture.
Our invitation to God's eternal party should be worded differently depending on who we are inviting. This is not to say we change the truth of God's Word, but that we adjust our language to fit the person we are speaking to.
When Paul traveled to Athens, he had to adapt a new strategy for reaching people with the Good News of Jesus Christ. He was grieved by the meaningless idol worship of the city. But instead of being offended or giving up hope for its people, he used those idols as a way to introduce God's Word. God loved the people of Athens becuase God loved them.
The same is true for proclaiming the Gospel to Native Americans. For many on the reservation or in rural villages, the stories, as they are translated don't make sense. People in the farthest reaches of Alaska may not fully grasp the idea of planting a field, but they understand harvesting wild berries, and they certainly understand the illustrations that tie to fishing.
As our own Clarence DeLude states, "You must learn how to sing their song."
Before you invite a friend to the eternal dinner, make sure you know who they are, how they tick, and what words will resonate with them to help them accept your invitation.
Jesus, thank you for preparing the table for us to come home to, and the abundance of food and shelter for all nations. Help me remember to invite everyone in [my reservation/city] because you want to tables to be full, and allow me to see your strategies for reaching those people. Give me correct words and the boldness to step out and work for your Kingdom to your glory.