This past weekend, our oldest daughter Julia gave our family an incredible gift. She cooked delicious elaborate meals all weekend long for us, inviting her brothers and their families to join us.
She came up with the idea in the middle of her fall semester. Julia was so busy with her classes, she wanted to have a weekend after finals were over to bring the family together and indulge in her hobbies. Inspired by a series of videos made by Binging with Babish, Julia set out to create several meals based on the Lord of the Rings series by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Here are some of the dishes she made for us:
Cranberry Scones, Mince Meat Pies, and an Apple Tart
Apple Tart, Poppy Seed Bread, and Sausages
Roast Duck, Mashed Potatoes, and Duck Gravy
Salmon and Dill Quiche
Honey Cakes and Mince Meat Pies
“Rabbit” Stew and Brussel Sprouts
Julia also made baguettes and braided bread. Everything she made was delicious!!
For drinks we had Apple Cider, Pots of Irish Breakfast Tea, Coffee, Water. Julia also made Mead, which she started back in November!
It was a weekend of eating, playing board games, playing outside in the snow, sledding and making a snowman, and just being together. Unfortunately, the same snowstorm that provided us with these outdoor activities also prevented some family members from joining us.
As we were concluding our fun filled weekend, I told Julia that the weekend reminded me of a story called Babette’s Feast written by Isak Dinesen. The woman in the story, Babette, cooks a sumptuous feast for people who normally eat very bland food. Some of them are appreciative and grateful, some had no idea of the great skill, and expensive ingredients that went into making the meal. The meal was truly a gift from Babette to these people, just as Julia’s weekend of meals was a gift to all of us.
Julia’s Feast and Babette’s Feast are illustrations of God’s grace given to us and how we receive that gift of His grace.
In this Holy Season where we remember the gift of the Christ child and the Peace He restored between man and God, let us take some time to enjoy the “Feast” He has laid before us, and enjoy the relationship we now have with Him. Let us acknowledge that He sacrificed greatly for us and voice our appreciation and love to Him. Let our rightful response be:
And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:1,2
When we lay our lives on the Lord’s altar, we are telling Him we accept the great love He has for us, and the great sacrifice He made to bring us this love, this forgiveness and this acceptance. We tell Him– we can trust Him– we can trust this great love. We are truly joining in the Feast He has prepared for us.
These thoughts greatly encourage me, I hope they encourage you as well.