I’ve been savoring a new book for DIY mini spiritual retreats: Awaken Your Senses by J. Brent Bill and Beth A. Booram. This book serves as a reminder to allow our physical beings to connect us to God, and with quotes like this –
“…God is in all beauty, both the simply amazing and the amazingly simple” (18) –
this book is right up my alley.
And a little bit of a stretch. On the whole I’m much more intuitive than sensory, which means I need this book more than those who naturally connect with God through the senses.
“Taste and see that the Lord is good” Psalm 34:8.
Some teacher or preacher I once heard said that the Jews poured honey on Scripture to teach their children that God and His Word are delicious. I imagined an old rabbi holding high a gigantic, black hard-cover Bible with embossed gold lettering, with honey oozing down its cover and children catching the drips on their tongues. I don’t know if it’s true or anything like the picture in my head, but that’s what I see when I hear that verse.
Yes, the Lord is good! He provided manna for the Israelites and the Lord’s Supper for the Church. He provides for us and sustains us. But there’s more in God’s Word about tasting, craving, being hungry or thirsty than just those two examples. Check it out: do a biblegateway.com search and see what you find when you type in taste-related words.
“Have you ever thought about tasting God in what you put in your mouth? The idea that food can remind us of the different attributes, ways and stories of God is a novel thought for most of us” (J. Brent Bill, 26).
Those two sentences compelled me to action.
The pantry had gotten out of control and had been driving me nuts. Except that I could shut the door and ignore the problem. The notion that the tastes hiding in my pantry could convey God to me, to my family, motivated me to clean it out. God does not taste like stale chips.
[And behold, as I typed that last sentence, Guy walked in groceries in hand – yes, he does most of our shopping and I am a lucky gal! – and handed me a bag of my favorite multigrain tortilla chips. Hallelujah, Amen!]
So what does God taste like?
This week, God tastes like homemade good for me food, like lentils and quinoa with roasted broccoli. Like fresh guacamole on chips Guy bought as a loving surprise. Like breakfast out with dear friends, kids and adults enjoying company and yummy goodness together. Like crisp chardonnay shared with my love. And the ooey-gooey comfort of veggie sloppy joes.
Veggie Sloppy Joes
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 jalapeno, diced (or to taste – you can use less or omit)
1/2 bell pepper, diced
3 garlic cloved, minced
2 cans black beans, drained & rinsed
1 c tomato sauce
1/4 c ketchup
3 tsp hot sauce (I used a combination of chipotle Tapatio & sriracha)
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
4 whole wheat burger buns
Heat oil in pan, then saute onions, celery, peppers, and garlic for 3-5 minutes. Add beans, tomato sauce, ketchup, and hot sauce. Turn heat to low and allow to simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Toast buns (if desired) and serve alongside a crisp salad.