Have you ever been to a dinner party where everything from the food to the decor looks like it came right out of a Martha Stewart book? The table is punctuated with hand-designed floral decorations grown in the host’s own garden. Immaculately and precisely ornamented furnishings (right down to the cute little bow that adorns the roll of toilet paper in the bathroom) are painstakingly attended to while tempting aromas entice your palate for the feast. Suddenly, the bag of corn chips, jarred salsa and store brand soda you brought seem inadequate and out of place when compared to the exquisitely presented cornucopia of food that boarders on being a work of art.
Keep that picture in mind and realize that all of us have been sent an invitation to attend God’s ‘party’, delivered personally by the Holy Spirit and written in the blood of Jesus Christ. But instead of simply accepting the invitation and entering into the hall to enjoy the lavish generosity of our grand Host, we feel the obligation to add something to the occasion, as if our meager contribution will in some way validate our presence there. However, scripture reminds us that when it comes to being in the presence of our Holy Creator, we can bring nothing to the party that will enhance our righteousness, (Is. 64:4; Eph. 2:1-5) nor can we in any way enrich what has God has so freely offered. (Eph. 2:8-9)
Yet, though empty-handed, still we are welcomed.
So instead of allowing understandable feelings of inadequacy to shame you, realize that once you’ve accepted the invitation, you are no longer merely an invited guest, but rather through Christ, become a valued and loved member of His family. That elevated position insures that you will never hold a second rate status, and that you’re not required to pave the way to access into God’s presence on your own. Rest in the words of Romans chapter 5: “since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.” (vs 1-2)
That doesn’t mean that service and good works aren’t still important. (Eph 2:10) They just aren’t the means by which we gain admission. Christ’s sacrifice has granted you entry and this new standing with God imparts a permanent place in the Father’s house and access to Him at any time, and for any reason. (Heb. 4:16)
So, stop looking for something good enough to bring. Just accept His invitation and come! A place for you is waiting at the banquet.