I have made thousands of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. I suppose that could qualify me as an expert. The peanut butter must be a certain amount, the jelly must be stirred before use, and the mixture should be about 50/50. Jelly with seeds in it is to be avoided....yuk! Clearly, I have way too much time on my hands to be discussing this meaningless topic.
So, I will instead introduce you to some people whom I consider to be masters of food. Andrew and his wife Anna are small deli owners in another town and the moment you walk into their establishment it feels as though they have know you for 20 years. "Hey, how are you doing?" It is good to see you. What can I do for you today?" Andrew and Anna should probably run a school to teach hospitality and then the food thing as a side gig.
The care put into food prep is clearly on display each time they place it in front of us. Their family business and reputation are on the line with every Sicilian pizza and Italian sub. Here is a presentation of their Italian with everything! I love mild peppers on mine and a bit of oil!
Our relationship with Andrew and Anna over the 9 years we have known them has developed beyond a customer / vendor interaction. Our appreciation of these two is and always has been based on how they made us feel the first day we met them (Their food is obviously near the top of the list too!)
Our task to make disciples for Jesus Christ in order to transform a broken world is also based upon how effective we are in connecting with and welcoming the stranger. Are there people you can meet today who would be impressed with your friendliness? Can you offer a stranger the sense of your genuineness? If after meeting you, would the person walk away feeling a special kind of different? I want people to walk away from our encounters with a smile on their face.
"All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of
reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against
them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s
ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s
behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might
become the righteousness of God." (2 Corinthians 5:18-21, NIV)
Today, when you speak and interact with those around you, speak on behalf of Jesus and bring folks into a relationship with Him. Breaking bread with them is always a win as well!