Did You Know That Breakfast Is A Holy Meal?
This past month at my church, I've been preaching on what it means to lead a Resurrection life--to live life as Jesus desires for us to lead it: filled with hope, purpose, meaning and joy. All of this sounds good, but how do we make this happen in a practical sense? This week we're going to spend some time thinking about just that.
I'm not much of a cook, but, since I am passable at making breakfast, I often prepare it for the family in the morning. It's nothing fancy, mind you, just bacon or sausage and eggs, waffles or pancakes for my youngest son (the frozen kind), and generally a second cup of coffee for myself and my wife.
It makes me happy to do this. My wife Merideth tells me that the feeling I get is often what she experiences when she prepares meals for "her boys." Merideth is actually a really good cook, and she truly enjoys it. So, it makes it even more special to me that she relinquishes something she loves to do, in order for me to experience some of the same joy she feels.
The other day she and I were talking about the scene from John's Gospel where the risen Jesus appears to his disciples by the Sea of Galilee while they are out fishing. When they finally come to the shore, they find that he has prepared breakfast for them. In The Message translation of the Bible, Jesus actually says to them, "Breakfast is ready."
Merideth shared some insight into that scene that I've been thinking about ever since. She told me, "Jesus shared the Last Supper with his disciples before he was crucified," and then "he shared the First Breakfast with them after he was raised from the dead." It was the sign of a new beginning, not just for the disciples but for all of Creation.
And in both the Last Supper and the First Breakfast, it's the ordinary act of eating, sharing food and drink that comes to symbolize something greater. In the case of the First Breakfast, Jesus essentially consecrates the fish--making what the disciples caught as a result of their labor sacred, and beautiful.
In his excellent book Living the Resurrection, Eugene Peterson sees a symbol for resurrection living in the story of the First Breakfast. Jesus blesses what we bring him--no matter how meager our offerings. Jesus breaks what we bring to him--breaking down our pride, teaching us to trust him. Jesus gives back what we bring to him--after it has been transformed and made new.
I can't help but think that doing this brings Jesus a tremendous amount of joy.
May you begin this day with images of the ordinary made extraordinary--consecrated moments where the mundane becomes sacred. May you bring your gifts this day and every day knowing they will be blessed, broken and given back so that you may be made new. And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always.