In this week’s readings, I was struck by the themes of abundance and feasting that are woven throughout the first reading in Isaiah and the gospel reading in Matthew.
In Isaiah, it is proclaimed that God will make a luscious feast for all peoples to enjoy. It is also revealed that God will destroy all of the things that weigh God’s people down. God will “swallow up death forever,” “wipe the tears from all faces,” and save God’s people.
As it says in Isaiah, “this is the Lord for whom we have waited!” For the One who wants abundant feasting for all and suffering for none.
In Matthew’s gospel, Jesus describes the Kingdom of God as a wedding party, where surely feasting was involved. What is striking about this feast is not that it was fancy or that the guests were dignified or wealthy (those guests didn’t even show up), but that, when no one showed up, the King invited anyone he could find, both bad and good. In telling this parable, Jesus preaches a God who invites the marginalized and rejected to the banquet feast— a God who desires abundance and feasting not necessarily for those that “deserve” it, but for anyone who is willing to come.
In the context of so much suffering in the world right now, when hunger and houselessness and joblessness are on the rise, and when resources are horded by the powerful and spread so thinly among the rest, it is important to remember that the God of abundance and feasting does not want us to live this way.
As people of God, how will we act to bring the Kingdom of God about in our lives? Who in our lives can we invite to the feast? What can we do to ensure that suffering is alleviated and abundance made real for all of us
~Olivia DiGiorno, Class of 2021, BA in Political Science and Theology and Religious Studies