It Will Never Get Any Smaller – a Thanksgiving Meditation


One of my very favorite movies has always been Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, starring Gene Wilder. The movie combined so many wonderful things – music, a compelling storyline, candy (what kid doesn’t love candy?), and the Buckets. And, I remember listening to the part of the movie where Gene Wilder would speak German over and over so that I could interpret what he was saying. The Bucket family was inspiring. They had very little – space or money – but they had more than enough love. Charlie had a wonderful heart, wasn’t greedy, and did all that he could to help his family. When he won the opportunity to go to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory along with his Grandpa Joe, I felt so happy and excited for him. This was a good family, and maybe this trip to the factory was just the opportunity they would need.

Now, in the factory, all of the golden ticket winners and their families encountered surprises – things that defied logic and reason. A chocolate waterfall, edible scenery, gum that contained a full meal. But, one of my favorite things in the movie is the Inventing Room. Inside the Inventing Room, we get the opportunity to dream big with Willy Wonka as he tests out the zaniest ideas he’s had. And my favorite is the Everlasting Gobstopper. The Everlasting Gobstopper was a small hard candy you could suck on, but it had a surprise. Willy Wonka described it this way:

“Everlasting Gobstoppers! They’re completely new! I am inventing them for children who are given very little pocket money. You can put an Everlasting Gobstopper in your mouth and you can suck it and suck it and suck it and suck it and it will never get any smaller!… There’s one of them being tested this very moment in the Testing Room next door. An Oompa-Loompa is sucking it. He’s been sucking it for very nearly a year now without stopping, and it’s still just as good as ever!”

Can you imagine how amazing this sounded to Charlie Bucket, a little boy who could only have one chocolate bar a year – his only birthday present? And, yet, how preposterous! A small candy that would never disappear!

What if I told you that this idea is real? It’s not a candy, but it is something that while it seems so small, is just what we need. And, it’s unlimited.

There is space. There is room. We are invited to the table.

When I was a kid, Thanksgiving dinner was always at my grandparents’ house. And, it seemed like no matter how many people were invited, there was always room at the table. “Pull up a chair. Squeeze in. There’s room.” And somehow, there always was. Space that seemed small, but was ever-widening to invite us in. Space that seemed to grow as the room was needed.

There is space. There is room. We are invited to the table.

In 2 Corinthians 9, we read this: “The point is this: the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully…As it is written, ‘He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor, his righteousness endures forever.’ He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.”

There is space because God has sowed it. There is abundance of love because God has given it. God gives good gifts – indescribable gifts – scatters good seed, and gives to those who have need. And Scripture says the One who gives these gifts – our great God – will supply and multiply the seed, and will increase the harvest.

There is space. There is room. We are invited to the table.

Will you come? Will you invite others? Will you pull up a seat, squeeze up next to the people on either side, and receive what God has prepared? The table is overflowing with God’s amazing gifts. We are surrounded by people – amazing people, indescribable people created by God. We are overwhelmed with love. And we are surprised by the space, by the room, by the welcome, that is for more than just us. So much more room than just for us! Space that seems to be ever-widening, and just like the Everlasting Gobstopper, it will never get smaller.

Will you come? Will you invite others?

There is space. There is room. We are invited to the table.


9 thoughts on “It Will Never Get Any Smaller – a Thanksgiving Meditation

  1. Everyone is welcome at the table. Everyone. That is such beautiful imagery. Before moving to Mexico my parents had lived in Pakistan and India. They had seen first hand the injustice of a society that labelled people untouchables and undesirables. They were not welcome at the table. I remember my father telling me that all people were precious, no matter what. He grounded me in the reality of the world. In southwestern Ontario our tables our heavy with promise. It is time to take the gospel beyond the reading and take action. It is time to invite the absolute other to break bread at our tables. It is time

  2. Thank you, April, for the reminder to keep going out and “gathering”. Your meditation fits in well with my recent devotions on manna: the Lord provided, but the people still had to go out and gather. God will equip/there is room at the table, but we are still called to go out and gather.

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