My girls are both mildly obsessed with eating. We often have to make them stop eating rather than having to persuade them to eat.
I don’t know what I’ll do if this third child is a picky eater.
Some think about it more than others. Some enjoy the act more than others. Some participate in it more than others.
We all consider it to some degree and we all (at least, those of us living in these First World sorts of places) do it fairly regularly.
We all do a lot more of it during this time of year than in any other season.
If all that we are, all that we do, is to be made sacred, then how does eating fit in? How can eating be a deliberately sacred event rather than being a piece of my day that has nothing to do with God?
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. ~ I Corinthians 10.31
Is eating simply how we sustain our bodily functions…or is there more to it than that?
I have noticed in the Bible lately that eating was meant to be much more. It is linked over and over again to fellowship with and enjoyment of God.
In the story of the Prodigal Son, the Father celebrates the son’s return with a feast.
Jesus shares His last supper with his closest friends and then tells them that He will not drink again until He does it with us in heaven.
The kingdom of heaven is compared to a king giving a wedding banquet to his son.
The image of a banquet, especially a wedding feast, is used several times to illustrate our enjoyment of God when we are finally with Him in body.
When we eat, we often are doing more than simply nourishing our bodies. We are sharing of ourselves with our family and our friends. This is sacred.
Perhaps eating is one of the last things that our culture hasn’t been able to take the sacred out of.
Our world tries hard to take God out of all that we do, to make everything a matter of utility. Yet when we share a meal with our family or with our friends, there is a sacredness there that is felt even by those who do not claim to follow God.
Even the act of growing our food is sacred. I have learned this in the past couple of years as I began our little garden.
God is a gardener.
In the second chapter of Genesis, He kneels down and breathes life into the soil. He then sustains Adam by the soil and invites him to join in His work of gardening.
We are invited to join in God’s work when we grow our food.
We are invited to join in the act of enjoyment of and fellowship with God when we eat food together.
As you eat with those you love, be deliberate. Be aware of the sacredness of what you share as you are eating. Be aware of the sacred work of those who grew your food.
Be aware of God filling you up with His own sacredness.