The first time I was a guest for a meal in the home of someone from another culture was in April 2000. My student was a kind elderly man from Afghanistan. He had a long white beard because in his culture men did not shave after their first son was born. He was 71 years old when we began lessons to help him understand English better for day to day life.
He had a heart attack and a quintuple bypass, so I did not meet with him for five weeks. I called his son and offered to have lessons in their home. They all quickly agreed.
The first time I went to their home, while we were studying, I heard the noises and smelled the smells of food being prepared. His son came out to talk with me saying, “My mother wants to know if you would like lunch.” Never being one to pass up a home cooked meal, I said yes.
The son left. The daughter left. The wife brought out the food, a big plate of rice that had raisins, almond slices, and carrots in it, chicken, beef, and a plate of veggies. Then she left. It was only my student and me.
I began to eat realizing that my student could not eat any of it because he was on a restrictive diet. After I finished my first plate, yes first plate, he laughed and filled it again for me without asking. I finished that plate and he filled it again for me. I finally put my hands on my stomach and said I could not eat anymore food. He laughed.
When I got back to my office, I told the receptionist I would be busy and to hold calls. I went into my small office, locked the door, turned my chair so the back was facing the door, and opened my pants because I was so stuffed. I worked on the computer for several hours.
Hospitality in other cultures is wonderful to experience. Whenever I visit people from other countries, the meal is an experience to cherish. I also think about how Jesus spent a lot of time in the homes of people. Often he was criticized for doing so.
Sharing a meal is a wonderful way to build friendship and connect with people. Jesus understood that when he was on earth and understands it now. In Revelation 3 Jesus says”
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
For now that eating would pertain to the spiritual food of the Word of God, the bible. But in the future there will be a huge feast for all who believe in Jesus. We will sit down with Jesus for the feast.
Jesus longs to come into our homes and share life with us. The question is if we will let him in.
Thank you for reading. God Bless.