Love Seats you at His Table
Love bade me welcome: yet my soul drew back,
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lacked anything.
“A guest,” I answered, “worthy to be here”:
Love said, “You shall be he.”
“I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on thee.”
Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,
“Who made the eyes but I?”
“Truth, Lord; but I have marred them; let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.”
“And know you not,” says Love, “who bore the blame?”
“My dear, then I will serve.”
“You must sit down,” says Love, “and taste my meat.”
So I did sit and eat.
You may not be into poetry. It has taken me 30 years to appreciate some of it. But this is a good one! Poetry is designed to slow you down and reflect on the familiar in a different way.
George Herbert was an 18th century poet and an Anglican pastor. He imagines a conversation between Love [God] and a sinner. It ends with Love making clear that God alone through the grace of Jesus Christ makes us worthy to sit and eat at our Father's table.
Repentance owns our earned guilt and shame, lets Christ bear the costly blame and rests in Love's delight (Zephaniah 3:17). So remember, as you prepare for communion on Sunday, that Love bade you welcome!
*Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash