I'm a food person and a big believer in gathering around the table. I've sat around tables and shared prayers, laughter, delicious bites, advice, and scripture, but most of all simply connected. There is an art to lingering at the table, a sort of ease that comes over the group dining together when dirty dishes are pushed aside for the moment, chores forgotten, and value placed on conversation over cleaning up.
Offering to share a meal with someone is really offering more than mere physical sustenance.
There are many who may meet Jesus at the table over the tabernacle. Both are needed. My pastor used to say that "Kindness leads to repentance." Can I just say it feels like there is so little kindness these days, between jabbing one another via social media and our busy schedules and pretense of perfect. My most healing moments have been when I've sat around the table with my neighbor, comfortable to be myself with a bowl of hot soup, lovingly served. When we offer to share a meal, we're offering an invitation to fellowship, a fun spot to talk about anything from recipes to really hard things.
I don't think the emphasis necessarily falls to food as the main actor. If cooking isn't your thing, I highly recommend doing potluck style or even takeout. The people at the meal matter more than the food on the plates. Still, if you're like me and cooking is something to look forward to, I want to share two quick recipes that are good for just about any time of day, with just about any kind of crowd.
The first is my favorite biscuit recipe. These take just a few minutes to make and are so much fun to cut out with the top of Mason jar. If having people over makes you a bit nervous, how about having your guests help make these biscuits to break the ice a bit.
Another favorite for us this time of year is homemade hot chocolate.
To make, combine a bit of honey and unsweetened cocoa powder on the stovetop, over low heat. Stir together until a thick syrup is formed. Then, add some unsweetened, vanilla almond milk and stir well for a few minutes to combine the milk and chocolate syrup. Last, pour and sip!
It would also be super cute to have some hot water ready on the stove, with a hot drink station nearby with hot chocolate packets, tea, etc. Then guests could bring a snack to share!
I pray this season you find the treasure hidden in dining together around the table.