Have you ever noticed how slowly people eat at fancy restaurants? Maybe it’s because the portions are small. Perhaps they’re doing math in their heads to see if they can still afford dessert? I’m certain everyone has their reasons for pacing themselves, but I tend to think it has something to do with savoring the moment. Each bite is special, crafted, even holy. Conversation is elevated. Service is VIP. You marinate in the magic—fully present and content.

One thing that sticks out to me about special occasions like this is that nice restaurants tend to humanize their employees as part of the dining experience. The staff is very well trained and they usually mention all the incredible entrees the chef has prepared. Everyone goes to great lengths to ensure you feel valued. The chef may even stop by your table. All of these overtures shape how we perceive our food, tip our server, and remember our experience. We bring a sense of expectation and a focused conviviality. And with all this good mojo, is there something we learn from an evening like this?

The Bread of Life

Sometimes I think we treat God like parsley. He’s a garnish on the plate of our lives. Sure he’s there, but ultimately he’s not what we remember about our weeks and months. When we reflect on our lives, he’s more like gravy than grain. He is not the substance of our diet or the focus of our attention. We have been dining with the king and yet we remain consumed by ourselves.

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