Sharing food is a uniquely human quality. Sitting around a table is a social past time and makes us realise there is so much more to sharing a table than first meets the eye and also that food is more than just fuel for our bodies. We connect around a table. We laugh together, and we give a part of ourselves. In this fast-paced, technically-driven world, we need to somehow slow down and simply enjoy life. We do this when we relax with people who make us feel comfortable.
I love eating out with special friends. We recently went to a very charming restaurant in White River called ‘Oliver’s.’ It was our friend Ursula’s birthday, and so Di and I had something to celebrate. (Not that we need an excuse to explore somewhere new but this time our ladies lunch was a special occasion.) There is something truly decadent about sitting for hours, sharing a bottle of wine and sampling different flavours. The conversation was a non-stop flow and to top it all off, we met the most interesting British couple who were on their 18th trip to South Africa. Our simple enjoyment of the food and surroundings made us comfortable to connect even for a few minutes.
I read somewhere that one of the delights of life is eating with friends, second to that is talking about what you ate and the only thing that tops that is being able to eat with friends while you discuss what you are eating! (And in my case photograph what you are eating!)
Our food choices ranged from Calamari on black mushrooms with tomato and garlic sauce to Gnocchi with blue cheese on a bed of mushroom risotto. We even included Black-bottomed berry cheese cake, Apfelstrudel and an assortment of Cheese and biscuits.
Theologian Barry D Jones once wrote he was “becoming increasingly convinced that food is one of God’s love languages.” Experts don’t usually put food on the list of Love Languages, but when you sample creations that have been so lovingly and carefully prepared, how can you not think of food as a gift of love? “God did not have to make us capable of experiencing such delight. Our 10,000 taste buds are a display of grace, an expression of his love.”
Even though it is so enjoyable to be able to eat and drink with friends, after a few hours we are hungry and thirsty again. I love it when Jesus said, “I am the bread of life, whoever comes to me shall not hunger and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35) I always love to put my life in a spiritual perspective. It makes me enjoy his creation and provision even more.