If you are an American Christian in 2018 there is a sad likelihood that it has been some time since you paused to savor anything.
And that’s not just a shame: it’s shameful. If God is the giver of every good and perfect gift, we are all too often the ingrateful and distracted recipients of those gifts. We might prefer that the sandwich taste good, but we also insist on eating it in so hurried and distracted a fashion that we scarcely taste it.
The Christian Discipline of Savoring
This is a problem for at least three reasons:
2. Sensation Overload
Second, God wants us to be sensitive to stimuli. It is Satan who desires that we be made numb and indifferent. And what he has accomplished through idolatry he is just as pleased to do through devices and a relentless pacing of life. Our frenetic lives and our blunted senses serve Satan’s purposes better than those of the God who created us.
3. Experiencing Grace in the Everyday
Third, the good gifts of God are means of grace to those who receive them. The delicate reach of a twig, the late day sunlight completing its journey in rosy triumph on the rough trunk of a white pine, the way the neighbor’s cat stretches on its morning stoop in what might be worship. The way cool water perfectly satisfies the parched tongue, the way lettuce tastes better for having been crunched between one’s teeth, the pleasure we might take in bathing and being clean. These are all things that have been salvaged from the shipwreck of Eden and as such are means of grace. They make the desert island on which Adam’s sons and Eve’s daughters washed up more survivable. But they also point us away from the desert island to the Promised Land across the waters and to the One who will, in time, bring us there.
5 Ways to Stop and Savor
So if we agree that we would be better disciples and happier people if we savored more what must we do to resist the tide of our culture?
8/6/2018 10:14:47 am
This was the perfect reading for the first day of Family Camp here in Washington, Maine. Thank you for these reminders!
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