In all the years that the Clarksons have been a family, feasting together has been a lifegiving activity for us. And we’ve always called it feasting, whether it involves a full-blown banquet, a one-on-one treat of milk and cookies, or a bowl of fresh-popped popcorn enjoyed around the fire. The word feasting reminds us of God’s bounty, the gift of our relationships, and the response of pleasure and thanksgiving that the act of sharing a meal requires of us. Somehow it makes “eating” sound more significant.
When God created the world and pronounced it good, He lavishly provided an abundance of delights to please every possible palate. His artistic hand can be seen in all of the food He provided, not just to satisfy our basic need for calories, but also to gratify our senses with color, aroma, texture, and taste—orange carrots and red peppers, purple-black eggplant, rust-colored cinnamon, yellow and green squash, golden honey, sweet green and red and purple grapes, yellow and multicolored corn, brown rice and pale grains of wheat, pink sea salt, speckled trout, crunchy pecans and bumpy walnuts, rich maple syrup, mild hominy, spicy green and red chilies.
God created all these and more for our pleasure and our satisfaction. And He created us in such a way that we make emotional and spiritual connections in the process of enjoying them, especially when we share them around the table with people we love.
Breaking bread together, sharing food, sitting at table eye to eye is essential to individual growth and relationship. Adults and children are not just bodies to be fed, but also minds to be challenged, hearts that depend on emotional input to survive and to grow as healthy human beings, and spirits that long for connection with God and purpose in life. Feasting together is a powerful way to fulfill physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.
Perhaps an exhausted, fussy toddler needs small snacks of chicken, nuts, fruit, or cheese to fuel his little body and settle his emotions. A hormonal teen might brighten up with a cup of coffee or tea, a hot piece of homemade toast awash with butter and jam, and a set-apart time together that communicates, “I am here to listen to your heart.” And for a stressed-out adult, there’s nothing like coming home to a pot of potato-cheese soup bubbling on the stove, bread warming in the oven, candles lit, the table set.
We feast because He has created beautiful, tasty, wonderful food; because He has made families to require and thrive on connection; because every meal is another opportunity to celebrate the fact that we sit across from and next to one another, caring for one another, living together, even if only for a moment, with joy.
Don't you think tonight is a good time for your family to feast? On good food? On great conversation? On love given and belonging shared? Happy Eating!!!
This little podcast is just me sharing some thoughts that have been passing through my brain. Hope you are encouraged.