Share Food; Share God’s Love

Over a year ago, I had the pleasure of interviewing Norman Wirzba for Her.meneutics, the Christianity Today blog written by (but not exclusively for!) women, and of reviewing one of his recent books, Food and Faith, for Books & Culture. We exchanged emails about food and faith, and, at some point, Dr. Wirzba agreed to write the Foreword for my book, for which I’m very grateful.

Here’s some of what he wrote:

“It is hard to imagine an important human event that does not involve eating. Birthdays, weddings, major accomplishments and funerals require eating because the sharing of food is thesharing of life with each other. Today’s industrial culture tempts us to think that food is simply fuel or a commodity we need to keep us going through our schedules.

But our own experience and desire teach us that is not right. Deep down we know that food is fellowship. When we eat together we share so much more than calories or grams of fat. We share in each other’s joy, pain, struggle and hope. Sharing food we share ourselves. We show ourselves willing to be companions in life’s journey, people who by sharing bread (panis) also share love.

It is no accident, then, that Scripture has food and eating constantly in view. God creates life by creating food. Indeed, among God’s most primordial blessings is the grace of food and the promise that agricultural cycles will yield their fruit in due season. God then invites the whole of humanity to participate in the just and generous sharing of food, making hospitality to others a basic witness to faithfulness. God wants us to share food with each other because in doing that we share God’s love.”

God’s Love Made Delectable

For Norman Wirzba–whose previous books include The Paradise of God: Renewing Religion in an Ecological Age and Living the Sabbath: Discovering the Rhythms of Rest and Delight as well as a collection of Wendell Berry’s agricultural essays–food is “God’s love made delectable.” He says:

“Every time we eat we are making a choice that is personal, but it is also social, ecological, agricultural and spiritual.”

Choosing food that has been raised in ways that honor the animals, people, and land is honoring to God, too. (Not to mention tasty!)

{that hammock alone is enough to convince me to observe the sabbath.}

I’d like to invite you to wander over to join me at her.meneutics and Books and Culture today, where my interview with Norman Wirzba and my review of his new book, Food and Faith appear, respectively.

{You can also watch a video interview with Wirzba here.}