This I believe: Food is medicine and you are what you eat. This makes my personal menu a sacred document. God help my unbelief. I don’t always stick to the menu. I am made up of everything I’ve been exposed to and my cells replace themselves all the time. Habits and Renewal … there is hope for me after all.
I’m not sure any of us kids were “planned”. We were the boomers that came after the bombs; the TV dinner generation. My parents did what they could feeding a family of seven every night but the “milk and honey” Paul spoke of was not on the menu. Baked macaroni and cheese made with Velveeta was. Hint: you don’t have to make that time-stealing white sauce and Hint: you won’t find it in the dairy section. It was delicious. Mom was a good cook but otherwise domestically challenged. Whether through financial vulnerability or sheer domestic chaos, once you’ve experienced food insecurity you never forget.
These days my insecurities revolve around bee populations, soil health and industrial food and yet I take for granted that I will not go hungry. On an ordinary day I keep it organic and simple: cereal, an egg, fruit, soup or salad, and anything that fits on a cracker. Soup is my favorite because the work is done; just reach into the freezer which is always there and running. I take for granted that groceries will always be safe and available while being annoyed at the task of shopping. I have no leftovers, only offerings for my freezer. I do bring home a doggy bag now and then. That is a delight.
Preparing food needs time. When I have it and take it, I feel blessed. Eating can’t be rushed and we have to do it every few hours. I am not surprised that Jesus said, “Do this in remembrance of Me.” When my blood sugar is low and I’m at my least agreeableness and most forgetfulness it takes twenty minuets for restoration to begin and for my mind to wake up. twenty minuets to chew on this: “My body broken for you”. I would starve without this massive, complex, delicately balanced wonder of wonders that provides for me. I would starve without knowing that I am beloved.
I am not surprised that food is the vehicle by which Jesus asks me to chew on the word. I am slow to learn and need reminding every few hours: sacred menus lead to sacred budgets and sacred regimen and better citizenship, less waste … enough for all.