Pass the Sweet Potatoes and A word of Kindness
“There is a hunger beyond food that’s expressed in food, and that’s why feeding is always a kind of miracle.”*
Did you know that Americans will consume over 51 million turkeys, 2.4 billion pounds of sweet potatoes, and 7.5 million barrels of cranberries this Thanksgiving?
And yet, even after that last bite of apple pie, we will still be a hungry people. And I’m not talking about our bellies, but our souls.
Over 2,000 years ago, in the midst of persecution, hunger, and despair, a group of people calling themselves Christians came together, often in secret, to celebrate their own Thanksgiving feast. Maybe the menu was different—broiled fish, olives, and salted bread, but they were just as hungry as we are today. I envy those ancient Mediterranean Thanksgiving meals because when those people met at the Eucharist table, said the blessing, and broke bread, they were eating their fill of hope, love, and promise. Unlike us, who never seem to be content, they came to the Table hoping to nourish their souls.
As long as we are clothed in flesh and bone, we are going to be hungry. We are a cosmic family of vulnerable and starving hearts. But if we come together as family, friends and strangers, and we abandon our egos and speak kindness, then we might just leave the table this year feeling full. And if we blink, we might even see the face of God seated at the table next to us.
We could all share a tale about the infamous family meal that ended in a crazed fireworks display. What do you expect when hungry souls come together even if they claim to love one other? This year I pray you will leave your ego at home and instead show up with a humble heart, ready to give more than you hope to receive. When you pass the bread and sweet potato soufflé, also pass a word of affirmation, encouragement, hope, and unconditional love.
When we serve and feed on love, miracles happen.
*Take this Bread by Sara Miles