I received an invitation to a banquet this week. It was unlike any invitation I have ever seen. It presented a beautiful cover picture of a wonderful setting that literally came to life on the paper. I was so impressed that I immediately made a note in my planning calendar to attend.
The cover displayed an outdoor setting near the shore of a beautiful river. The river was flowing lazily by and the occasional fish could be seen jumping out of the water, trying to avoid becoming prey for larger fish. Many birds fluttered about trying to catch the frantic fish.
There were green meadows and lush shade trees in abundance. Beautiful flowers attracted a rainbow spectrum of butterflies. Numerous bees and even hummingbirds were also enjoying the nectar. The scent of the flowers filled the air.
It was pleasantly warm with a cooling breeze coming across the water. The sun was bright and the sky was Carolina blue. Fluffy clouds resembling ice cream scoops danced across the sky.
Everyone pictured in attendance was smiling and having a great time. There was singing, dancing and conversation about all things good and wholesome.
Attendees included young and old, fit and not so fit, and people representing all of the races of the world. Despite their physical and cultural differences, all mingled happily together.
I was amazed at the talent of the graphics designer. How could a mere human bring a cover picture to life? Surely this talented artist must possess supernatural powers.
After gazing at the cover page for what seemed an eternity, I just had to learn more about this occasion. I was intrigued.
Opening the announcement, the written invitation announced a fare that would be simple and filling. It would be impossible to leave hungry. All were invited to take as much as they wanted; overindulgence would not result.
Beyond this, no hint was given about what food items would actually be offered.
At the very bottom of the invitation was a number to RSVP. The number was illegible. It looked like the ink had been smeared while it was still wet.
And that was it. There was no additional information.
Hoping to find a source for more information, I looked closely at the envelope which carried the invitation. There was no return address or cancelled stamp.
Who sent this beautiful invitation and how did it get to me?
Suddenly I awakened with a jolt. Rubbing my eyes, I had no immediate memory of the invitation or its message. I was aware, however, that something deep inside was telling me to check my planning calendar.
Why am I awake at three o’clock in the morning? Why is it so important to check my schedule at this hour?
Reluctantly, I pulled myself out of bed and went to my home office. Opening my calendar, I found myself looking at a page with the following notation: Holy Communion this Sunday.
Like a lightning bolt, my memory returned. I had been dreaming. The beautiful picture had been an elaborate dream.
The banquet invitation was my reminder to partake of the Body and the Blood during the next scheduled communion service. I had been reminded in the most beautiful of ways to come to His table on Sunday.
Thank you, Lord, for reminding me. And thank you for giving me the gift of eternal life through the death of Thy Son, Jesus Christ. Without your grace and love I would surely have been lost forever. I am not lost, however, because now I see and I am free.
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