Space Around the Table

“So many people were coming and going they [the apostles] didn’t even have a chance to eat,” and Jesus said to them, ‘Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.’” (Mark 6:31) Such good advice–go to a quiet place and get some rest. We all have busy lives and are often prideful about how busy we are as if being overly busy is a great prize or noble goal. Making an effort to enjoy time with family is not only biblical; it’s essential. Jesus taught us the value of finding a quiet place, a time to rest and a time to come to the table with family because we need it.


A Place for Memories

“They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts.” (Acts 2:46) Food sustains our life. There are many ways and places we can obtain and consume that food but the early Christians modeled the best way for us to do that—they ate together. Most of us can think back to some of the great meals we’ve shared with our families. The chicken was great, the potatoes were creamy and the pie was to die for. What we remember is much more than the food—the conversations, the life lessons and the history of days gone by. Those times together around the table molded our lives, our behaviors and our beliefs.


Good Food, Good Drink, Great God

Food and fellowship are linked. Enjoying a meal with others is part of everyday living and it can be especially meaningful when it’s shared with your loved ones around the family table. In Ecclesiastes 9:7, King Solomon implored us to “go, eat your food with gladness and with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do.” When we eat together, we pause and remember the Lord provided it all. At the end of each day, we can rest from our busy lives and enjoy one another and be thankful for God’s blessings.


Together Wherever

God established the family from the very beginning when He created Adam and Eve. “Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib He had taken out of the man and He brought her to the man.” (Genesis 2:22 NIV) The family table is the place where we can come together and share our hopes, dreams, and aspirations. We are not promised a tomorrow, so “someday” and “one of these days” at the family table must become terms we rarely use. Now is the time to gather around the table as a family regardless of where that table is located.


Beyond Your Family

Some of you like to prepare a good meal for your family and willingly extend that hospitality to others. You may enjoy providing a meal for someone outside your family by helping to feed the hungry in our community. Some of you help your church community through multiple service projects, bereavement meals or assisting with the church’s various activities. Whether your service centers around the family table in your home, your community or in your church, it will fulfill God’s instruction in 1 Peter 4:10: “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”