the table: banquet feast

By Chris Goforth

Eating is one of my favorite things. Living in Portland, there is no end to the delicious goodness one can partake in when food is involved. Exploring the city, finding some of the best foods my mouth has ever tasted and anticipating my return for more. Much of this has been done while sitting around a table with co-workers and friends.

GoforthTableA large table reminds me of day’s longs since passed where as a young boy we gathered at my grandparent’s house. Aunts, uncles and cousins joined together -laughing, story telling and filling our bellies with foods prepared by my Grandmother’s hands. In fact if I think very long, my best memories surrounding this set of grandparents always involves sitting around their dining room table eating.

Thinking back, those memories reminds me of my love of family and my own desire to have a large family. I also recall watching episodes of the Walton’s and being enamored with a large family who was strong, worked through hard times, but always gathered round a table to share a meal and took delight in being together.

I have been blessed with having a wife who is quite an amazing cook and baker. She can turn the most boring dishes into something quite delicious. I myself am a pretty good cook and am not afraid to try different things. We both share a desire for opening up our homes to others, cooking large quantities of food and entertaining. We have countless memories of people who have graced us with their presence while we sat around a table eating, drinking and sharing stories about life, many of those times lasting long into the early morning hours.

Early on I began leading small groups; an outpouring of one of the small groups I led was having what we called a Leftover Party, which we planned for year to partake in the day after Thanksgiving. Everyone brought all the leftover remnants from their perspective homes to ours and we spent the better part of an evening, eating and enjoy the bountiful goodness of what was before us. The talks ranged but the important part was being together and sharing that time. We maintained that tradition for quite some time. As time passes and changes occur, the Leftover Party remains etched in our memories.

My wife and I share duties on Thanksgiving and this past Thanksgiving as I was thinking of what we would be doing for our meal, through a variety of conversations it struck me. The closest thing on earth we will ever come to taking part in the marriage banquet of Jesus and his bride is a Thanksgiving meal. The bride– his bride (all of us), will be gathered together around a table, celebrating our reunion, a time when all will be right, pain & suffering, anger & hatred, bitterness & strife – all of it will be disappear for eternity. Tears streaming down our faces won’t be of sorrow, instead immense joy. Our long awaited King will make his triumphant return, calling us to join him at the table, taking part in the celebratory feast. Heart who have watched and waited, prayed faithful silent prayers that this day would come can now take part.

Yes that day will be coming. My faith is in the ONE who will invite me to come join the others, welcoming me and showing me my place at the table. Until that day comes I will continue taking part in moments gathered round a table with family and friends. Each meal will now mean something different. Each gathering a reminder of what is to come.

Earlier this year we were given a gift. When we moved into our house 5 years ago, we exchanged the spacious dining room we used for an oversized hallway as our new dining room. Adjustments have been made over the years to make things work to fit people around a smaller table we were reduced to due to spatial concerns. We’ve lamented the lack of space. The gift we received was in the form of the table in the picture at the top. Our adopted son’s Case Worker had that table custom made due to a blended family of her own. Since having it made her children have grown and they have moved on. She was looking for a large family who could benefit from it and we were the ones blessed by it. The table being as large as it is a two-fold reminder – we like our youngest two children have been adopted into a family and each meal shared at this table is a reminder of the banquet feast to come.

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About Chris:  West Coast Ninja Hipster Dad –eating great food, taking photos, exploring outdoors, playing Settles of Catan. Not settling, but seeking the truth found in Jesus

Personal thought:  Chris and I met on Twitter.  He gives me great encouragement with his diligence in seeking the heart of Christ.  I’m hoping to Tweet-up in the near future.  In other words, road trip to Portlandia!!

You can read more of Chris’ great insight on his blog:  empire of the one

Follow him on Twitter.

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Your comments are welcome. Be respectful.

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