I arrived at the event as little early and went to the registration table. The girls got all excited and asked me my name. I gave it to them. They scanned the name tags on the table and when they didn't see it there they just waved me ahead. No name tag for you! Their excitement dissipated as quickly as it had arrived.
A few minutes later a young lady came up to me and asked me if I was "somebody." I told her my name and she said, "You're not a senator or representative? I thought with the suit and the newspaper you must be someone." Then she left.
I laughed to myself because it was the first time in many years that I felt unwelcome in a place. As I scanned the room I noticed that most of the people were with the group that had organized the event. Not one of their invited guests had come. No wonder they were asking every new face if they were someone on the A list.
By the time the event began, four or five of the dignitaries were on hand and everyone was pleased with the results. It made me realize how important it is to greet our visitors with enthusiasm each week at church. Too often we do something similar. We greet our friends with great gusto but ignore the stranger and leave them feeling like an unwanted guest.
I praise God that he never fails to get excited when we come into his presence. He lifts us up and celebrates our arrival as if we were the most important person on earth. God loves us and he lets us know every time we come into his presence.