Psalm 37:23, “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and He delights in his way.”
I'd be lying if I said that I don’t enjoy food, especially those yummy desserts, who doesn't enjoy a good meal? One of my favorite things to do is find new recipes that I can use at church potlucks or with my guests. I even comment every so often that I like to be creative with my food, especially with the spices and seasonings.
It's amazing how in all culture food can be the center of many occasions. Food is used to help people celebrate, it's used to help them mourn, it's used to help build communities. Food can be part of our identity. ‘These are the kind of dishes I make, the ingredients I use, even the techniques I use.’ One of my favorite sayings, “I learned this from my grandmother.” There's nothing as special as family recipes handed down through generations.
Another thing food does is show outsiders who we are. Have you ever visited small towns and asked about their local cuisines? In the South you can get great fried home cooking, out east along the shores the fish recipes are abundant. In the upper part of Michigan, we are known for our Pasties. For Adventists we have a potluck favorite, ‘Haystacks’. Sometimes what you cook, can give someone a better idea of who you are.
There is a joy that comes from cooking a dish everyone loves. Have you ever watched any cooking shows or cooking competitions? Each chef is excited to present their dish to the judges or viewers. They are happy when the judges make good comments about the dish they made. Part of cooking is to be appreciated for what you bring to the food you make.
One of my favorite things about cooking and showing it is the times we get together as friends and family around the table. Food brings us together and opens the door to good conversations and times of sharing. I miss that the most now that my children are adults and not home very often for meals. Thanksgiving is also a great time for food, family, and fellowship.
Did you know food and cooking fulfills a mandate given to us in Genesis? “God said, “Look, I have given you all the plants that have grain for seeds and all the trees whose fruits have seeds in them. They will be food for you.” Genesis 1:29. By cooking and making dishes from recipes or creating our own recipes, by applying our own techniques to improve a dish, we are making use of creation as God asks us to. Psalm 104:14-15, “You make the grass for cattle and vegetables for the people. You make food grow from the earth. You give us things that make a happy heart and olive oil that makes our faces shine. You give us bread that gives us strength.”
How can we apply this as Christians? As a child of God, we have something special not everyone has. We have a hope and promise and when we share Jesus we can be filled with the same kind of joy when others find the same joy. Now combine sharing your food at the table with sharing Jesus, it makes for a wonderful time with friends.
I hope you are filled not with only the joy of cooking but the joy of Jesus and that you can find ways to share both around the table. Then one day we all can enjoy eating with Jesus at the banquet table He is preparing for us now. What a place that will be.
Life without joy is unbearable. The Christian life is a life of many afflictions. But in them all, God sustains joy, and he does it by the Scriptures. "You received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit." (1 Thessalonians 1:6) "His delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night." (Psalm 1:2). Open the Bible each day to find the encouragement and uplifting you need when dealing with this world and with life in general. Today we will continue our study with 2 Corinthians chapter 4.
Study 4, 2 Corinthians chapter 4- https://www.docdroid.net/8JUh8EC/study-4-docx
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