First Reading: Proverbs 25:6-7
6Do not put yourself forward in the king’s presence or stand in the place of the great; 7for it is better to be told, “Come up here,” than to be put lower in the presence of a noble.
When you are invited to a wedding, he says, and it comes time for dinner, don’t take the places of honor. Otherwise someone more important will arrive late and you will be asked to move down. Take a seat at the end of the table and the host will move you up. Hence, you will be honored before all. I like the story historians tell about the funeral of Charlemagne. Charlemagne was the greatest Christian ruler of the early Middle Ages. After his death a mighty funeral procession left his castle for the cathedral at Aix. When the royal casket arrived, with a lot of pomp and circumstance, it was met by the local bishop, who barred the cathedral door. "Who comes?" the Bishop asked, as was the custom. "Charlemagne, Lord and King of the Holy Roman Empire," proclaimed the Emperor's proud herald. "Him I know not," the Bishop replied. "Who comes?" The herald, a bit shaken, replied, "Charles the Great, a good and honest man of the earth." "Him I know not," the Bishop said again. "Who comes?" The herald, now completely crushed, responded, "Charles, a lowly sinner, who begs the gift of Christ." To which the Bishop, Christ's representative, responded, "Enter! Receive Christ's gift of life!" Even Charlemagne in all his glory and good works could not assume a position of honor. I am convinced that the more honor is due us the more we should resist it. Does that mean we shouldn’t be proud of our accomplishments. Not at all. But we should not seek the accolades that come with success. The book of Proverbs has a terse reminder for us all: Pride comes before a fall.
Let us come humbly to the table.
Let us pray: Almighty God, let us remember who the ALMIGHTY is, and who WE are in the your presence. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen