Veggies are a food group that grace nearly all of my meals, and special occasions are no exception! Today I was able to attend a tea party with a group of lovely ladies I met during my high school years. When the list of allergies is long enough to fill a Bingo card, cooking becomes a challenge! And yet good food filled our plates and smiles were passed along with the scones. This Proverb rings true:
“Better is a dinner of herbs where love is
than a fattened ox and hatred with it.”
The word “herb” does indeed refer to “greens and vegetables.” I have enjoyed meals at many restaurants, and some exquisitely crafted food, but my favorite meals are those that are shared with friends, no matter how simple our menu. Laughter is a universal seasoning that can add a touch of amazing and pinch of magical flavor to almost every dish.
Fattened oxen were the most expensive delicacy in Biblical times, served at the biggest event of the year. They were for weddings and feasts where the village showed up to party. But even the smoothest steak served up with tension and angst is a little tough to chew.
What kind of meals do you serve, even when you are the only one eating? Philippians 4:11-13 is a passage that has made me think lately. Paul is writing in regard to receiving help from the church in Philippi:
“11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”
The secret of contentment is an elusive treasure. It is based on the ability to accept what God gives you at the moment. Americans crave consistency and we try to make our lives stable by controlling our resources with insurance for good measure. We do this both with food, and how we commit to friendships. Contentment comes when the constant in our lives is sourced from a knowledge that God is powerful and gives us what we need for the time being. This knowledge endures whether we are entrusted with millions (of friends or dollars) or learning to trust when we feel pinched (in smiles and funds).
Simple food with good friends is a precious thing to enjoy, even partying with veggies.
God, thank You for friendships, and the pleasure that sharing a meal can bring. You have richly blessed me. God, please help me be a person who can improve a meal by my outlook. Please help me to learn to be content with what You give me, and point other people to the excitement of seeing You work. Thank You for providing. Amen.