The Earth's Table

"I can't imagine life without a table between us.  The table is the life raft, the center point, the home base of who we are together." 
~Shauna Niequist  - Bread & Wine: A Love Letter To Life Around The Table

I write this post from our dining-room/kitchen table.   

I have always been intrigued by tables.  I love their unique designs and of course the anticipated delectables that you get to sample while sitting at the table.  I delight in carefully selecting the right décor and menu with special guests in mind.

My favourite part though is to linger around the table after a meal sharing laughter, stories and our lives together with family and friends.

So it was no surprise how excited I was when we discovered a particular place called The Tablelands when we were planning our trip to Newfoundland a couple of summers ago.

The Sunday morning of our family trip we set out to explore the Tablelands, which is one of the popular hiking trails located in Gros Morne National Park.  This trail showcases the stunning beauty and history of the ancient rocks from our Earth’s mantle.  

As I walked along the breezy trail I felt as though I was on hallowed ground.  With each step the mystery of the ancient earth’s secrets unfolded from our Divine Creator and Host.

The Tablelands at first glance appear barren, yet if you look carefully you will discover rare species of plant life hidden along the trail.

God’s presence was all around us.   We were surrounded by the rusty-coloured panoramic views as we walked with the Earth’s terracotta soil under our feet.  One site for Parks Canada referred to the Tablelands as "the Earth's inner soul." 

I thought it was fitting that we would end up on our itinerary in a place ironically named the Tablelands on a Sunday morning. 

Although we were not in a physical church building to partake in communion, as I hiked along I could not help but ponder the significance of the Table of the Lord from a fresh vantage point.

As the guide explained how the Tablelands reveal what is below the surface of the Earth I climbed up some rocks away from the rest of the group.

I bent down and took the coloured soil in my hand.

Holding back tears I gave thanks for this Earth that I now saw for the first time as our collective communion table, where the deeper things of God are made known to us.  

In my church, we celebrate the Table of the Lord, where God's love is revealed to us in Jesus Christ.  But I was thinking too small - too local.  All of creation reveals God! The whole earth is God's Table prepared for us to see his glory.  

The Earth’s table is created and prepared by our most gracious Host, our Father.

We use the terminology Host & Hostess to describe the responsibility of a person to receive and take care of others as their guests.  Yet, the description of our Heavenly Host is one who receives us not just as guests, but as His very own. Now that is hospitality.

He is a Host who extends true belonging to you and to me! 

The Earth is a table prepared with intention by our Father as a place to gather together in community to taste and see His glory.

It is a place to catch a glimpse of his indescribable beauty.

It is a place of undeserved belonging and honour where we are invited to rest in sweet communion with Him.  

I share this story as the first weekend of October happens to be World Communion Sunday.  This is where Christian denominations gather for Eucharist together in unity.  It gives me chills thinking of all the Christians around the globe seated at the Earth's table...God's tablelands.

Let us together give thanks as we celebrate and remember the sacrifice and resurrection of Christ as we partake in this divine meal.   Hear His voice inviting you to come to the table to dine with Him.

“ Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; 
the whole earth is full of His glory”
~ Isaiah 6:3 NIV


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