Thursday, November 28, 2013

A Plentiful Feast

Some people take pictures of the Thanksgiving table laden to the breaking point before the family erases the delectable evidence of a morning spent in the kitchen. Apparently I am not one of them. As the mouthwatering dishes appeared from the kitchen to have a glorious, but short-lived, moment in the spotlight, I completely forgot any intention to record the moment digitally.  A singular impulse to dig in usurped any fanciful idea of creating a photographic commemoration of the occasion. On this day dedicated to giving thanks, it was an act of the will to slow down long enough to offer thanks for the meal.

In place of photographs of steaming vegetables and roasted turkey, I offer as evidence the menu that met me as I entered the back door to my son’s home on Wednesday. I’m not sure whether he or his wife began the list, but I learned that she had added the times stamps for Thursday morning hours and Wednesday’s make ahead dishes. After my introductory glance at the list, I returned time and again, reading, asking questions and anticipating the feast we would have on Thursday.

This would be no ordinary green bean casserole and Jello salad Thanksgiving repast. The menu promised the kind of culinary masterpieces that ensure a gastronomical delight. The menu had been precisely planned. The freshest ingredients had been Whole Foods purchased or garden picked. The turkey was obtained directly from the farm where it had been walking freely just two days before. Recipes were gathered from Bon Appétit or read on cell phone from online sources.

Such a feast. Sweet potato with rosemary soup. Green beans with walnuts. Baked Brussels sprouts. Potatoes. Gravy. Turkey. Freshly baked rolls. And then the desserts: pumpkin pie brûlée baked in a chocolate crust, plus a Louisiana pecan pie.

We ate until we were full. There was food left to spare. We are looking forward to the remnants tomorrow.

There is joy and comfort at a bountiful table. Stories are told. Family ties are strengthened. Gratitude abounds.

A family Thanksgiving opens our eyes to a kingdom truth. The plentiful holiday feast is a reminder of the table our Father sets before us daily. It reminds us he gives us our daily bread and that his Son is the bread of life, that he feeds our bodies and nourishes our souls. For those who are focused on an eternity with Christ, it whets our appetites for wedding supper of the Lamb.

God’s children can be grateful. We have a lot of feasting going on.

And you shall eat in plenty and be satisfied and praise the name of the Lord, your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you. And My people shall never be put to shame. And you shall know, understand, and realize that I am in the midst of Israel and that I the Lord am your God and there is none else. My people shall never be put to shame. Joel 2:26-27