Sunday, November 7, 2010

Bread for the Journey

The Tablecloth
Growing up in a Mennonite home I early understood the importance of the table.
Fellowship happened around the table -- not only for the family but also for every guest that entered the home.
Guests were never invited to a table that was not covered with a beautiful cloth and china dishes.
It is amazing to me that my mother-in-law fleeing Ukraine in WWII with three young children, losing most everything she owned, managed to keep with her a table cloth that belonged to her mother and grandmother.
She gave me that tablecloth shortly before she died.
(You see it in the photo.)
Throughout the Bible the ‘table’ and its importance is often referred to.
We have Abraham’s offering of food to his divine guests.
We have Jesus’ many references to food/feasts in His parables.
We have the first believers meeting daily to share their evening meals.
We have the ordinance of the communion table that we still partake of.
There is however a very special supper spoken of that is yet in the future.
A celebration supper in heaven for Jesus and His bride.
The invitations have been sent out to every person .
But there is an RSVP required.
Have you responded to the invitation?
**
“Then he said to me, "Write:
'Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!' “
Rev. 19:9 (NKJV)

15 comments:

  1. I'm just stopping by before church (today and next week I teach Sunday School - poor kids!! 8-).

    What a beautiful post! Sometime could you tell more of the MIL-fleeing story?

    Thanks!

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  2. Yes, this is a good post.
    Our table is an important place.

    We come together to share a meal and discus our day. No TV or radio to distract us.

    When company comes, we usually gather around the table and share a cup of coffee and visit.

    Its where we gather to play board games, still important even though the gameboy is in the other room waiting.

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  3. I know so little of the Mennonite way of life. I always knew that the Mennonite women are great cooks however what I have seen on TV confuses me. I see them living a life without the modern stuff that we seem to have, but here on your blog, I don't see that at all. It looks like you are living a life of luxury as compared to me for example. If possible could you enlighten me on this please? I love your blog and you sure have great recipes.. JB

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  4. Thanks for this beautiful post. The table is a very important "meeting" place for our family too. I have many poignant memories from my childhood days centered around the table. Thanks for the reminder that we need to prepare for the most important banquet table which is yet to come. I like the RSVP take on this - very good. God bless you all.

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  5. I have one little side-plate from that dinner service. It makes me happy. I love setting a pretty table full of detail. It is almost as important as the meal. Lovely post.

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  6. A beautiful way to share the message of salvation. Thank you.

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  7. Julie,
    The Family Table, OH, so divine to set it with believers or those who are seeking. What a wonderful honor for us to share our hospitality with those in our circle of influence..
    How beautifully written.

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  8. How beautiful this story is. A number of years ago, I had a very poignant visit around my (mennonite) aunt's table along with my parents, and numerous other aunts and uncles. We first enjoyed a delicious mennonite noon meal. We had somma borscht, farmer's sausage, homemade buns, preserves, pickles, cheese, etc. When the dishes were done, we sat and talked ... around the table. We then pulled out the translated diaries of my grandmother. We would look up wedding dates, or other significant events to see what she had written about it at that time. (The diaries are from the 30's, 40's and 50's). I LOVED listening to my aunts and uncles speak about their memories. What wonderful conversation we had!

    Turn the clock ahead to today .... most of them have now passed on. I still cherish the wonderful memories ... sitting around a table. And oh yes, we had rollkuchen & watermelon for faspa (afternoon lunch)!!

    Thank you for the post today as it brought back such special memories for me. Even more importantly, to remember that there is a heavenly table waiting for us. I have RSVP'd.

    Blessings,
    ~ Shirley ~

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  9. Ah yes, the table, and the tablecloth and the fine china. Always at my Mom's, on special occasions anyway. And great conversations. And the very same china that you have in your photo, Apple Blossom. Have you read the history of Apple Blossom?

    I have my grandmother's tablecloth that she crocheted herself. She ran out of thread and finished in a slightly but noticeably different color. It used to bother me but now I've become rather attached to it.

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  10. I enjoy your Sunday messages.
    wonderful!

    And, thanks for sharing the table cloth with so much history.

    Not only will I remember the feast yet to come...I will also remember to treat each guest in my home with special honor. I will try my best not to fret and stress over a dinner in my home but to make it an act of love and friendship.

    Amen!

    Have a wonderful week.

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  11. A few points from another Mennonite girl that might answer a few questions posed by others. The Mennonite faith is a basic belief that has many different social aspects often determined by the time period they emigrated from the "old Country." The Amish and Hutterites practice the basic faith but following a second leader who then set more of the social aspects firmly. Many Mennonites emigrated from the Ukraine region of Russia. My parents as children came in the 1920s. Our social life and a lot of foods were significantly different from the Mennonites who fled the same general are in the 1870s often causing questions about the homes of some of my cousins as they were a marriage between the 1870 and 1920s groups of people. I have spent a lot of time researching the Mennonite history to answer my own question of" what really is my background."

    I own a coffee boiler that was my grandparents' wedding gift in Russia that then made it to Canada. From my Grandmother's stories they fled many times within Russia before the final trip to Canada and sometimes gathered things like we would from a burning house. The other item that made it is their Bible.

    I have a full service for 12 to 16 of the dishes pictured. It is called Blossom Time. Apple Blossom dishes are very similar.

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  12. Meeting around the table has always been special in our family. Lovely thoughts in this post Julie. I'm looking forward to that marriage supper of the Lamb...

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  13. This is one of my favourite blogs on the net! I'm a good-cook-wanna-be and have this secret dream that one day my family will wake up to a great surprise when I begin to use the recipes and tips on this blog! My Mom had this same beautiful set of dishes and the same mindset (although not Mennonite) that guests be served on cloth with good china. She spent her honeymoon with my Dad on a cargo ship, crossing the Atlantic Ocean in the 1940's to begin her married life as a missionary on a remote, African bush station. I was born there in the back bedroom of a mud house -- but in my mind I can still see the table my Dad made, covered with one of her cloths and spread with her wedding china! Your post brought it all back in a flash! Thanks so much! She is 93 now and will be moving in to live with us on Thursday this week. Parkinson's has stolen away her independence but, thankfully, not her mind!

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  14. Thank you, Agnes for that info ! very well said !
    We have posted a link on our blog side bar to a site that has a lot of information regarding what Mennonites are. There is a little video and also information organized under headings. The FAQ might be quite helpful.
    Also I would be happy to try to answer any questions you are still wondering about... just e-mail me, personally.

    We do appreciate your interest and all your comments are important to us!

    PS. yes.. my china set is Blossom Time... I started my collection in 1965 when I was 18 and newly married.

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  15. Oh, Carol-Ann.. I guess my comment crossed with yours... thank you for that beautiful story!

    Thank you again for all your comments -- you have no idea how much we treasure them !

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