In my attempt to iron out kinks & wrinkles in my life, I'm on a constant Spring Cleaning of the inner "closet" workings of my mind. Part of that is translated into this little slice in the blogosphere, Redeeming the Table. By my very NF nature, I am always refining, asking, inquiring "Who am I?" and "Where Am I going?" I like to give myself tangible goals that fit with my hearts passion & talents.
This is ever present at Redeeming the Table, because I have been feeling a little directionless of late, and want to give you a clear picture of what I am about, what Redeeming the Table is about, and then let you decide if you want to stay for the ride or not. I'm learning the beauty of not being offended when I get an 'unsubscribed' notice, because as Ben says, "In the world of marketing & business, you have your lovers & haters. You know where they stand. What you want to know is the people in between who haven't chosen a side."
So, I've created a Q&A while on vacation, which I will post a new section every day and then compile them altogether to be found in the section header above. Today's Q&A is what I would call, Redeeming the Table's mission statement of sorts.
What is up with the title 'Redeeming the Table' anyway?
Prior to having Redeeming the Table, I had another blog called Evangitality. Evangitality was comprised of the words, 'evangelism' and 'hospitality.' However, I always felt restricted by the word itself when it came to my writing & self. After realizing that I was going to change my blog entirely, I needed a name that encapsulated what I felt about living this life & connecting people. Those three ideologies were food, storytelling, & hospitality. I thought up names like “Around the Fire,” because oral storytelling was around a fire, you cook food around a fire, which produces an opportunity of hospitality as well. Although, it didn't quite fit.
My friend Hilary mentioned the scene in Moonstruck where the mother becomes irate about someone leaving shoes on the table as if they had broken a sacred covenant. Yes, the table was a symbol for all things beauty & sacred in this world. People joining around a table, being known & nourished at the table. The final feast in the end of days around a banqueting table. Then, as if it had been there all along...the word God had been speaking to me over & over again...Redeem. I am redeemed like a desert into gardens, and I'm certain he's constantly redeeming all of creation. His very nature is to redeem. How can we in the 'here but not yet' world mimic him through this act of redemption?
We can redeem through the very concrete table, or even figurative tables, of our life? Thus, Redeeming the Table was birthed as a means to bless & encourage every reader who comes here to share food, stories & hospitality with friend or stranger around their table.
What do sharing food, hospitality, and storytelling have to do with one another?
Sharing food nourishes. When we offer a simple meal, cold drink on a hot day, or hot drink on a cold day to friend, or stranger, we open up a bit of ourselves. We say, “this is not my stuff, but it's meant to share.” Cooking a meal for others is the simplest way to communicate care & love. It's like seeing a rainbow at the end of a terrible storm.
Food is easily mingled with hospitality in the heart in which it is given. By providing food, it makes room for others in our lives. It opens the seat at our table & welcomes the downcast who needs to know there is hope. It makes space for the friend who needs to share their dreams. Hospitality is all about being a blessing, in order for the recipient to be blessed. It is nothing about the host, but all about the guest.
And hospitality lends way to sharing our stories. When we invite that sojourner to our table with a cup of hot tea and biscuit, we get to stop from our work and tend to what is most important...them. We feed their stomach with food, their soul with hospitality & their whole being by listening to their story. Our stories come out naturally when someone simply stops and asks us. It's the Eucharist being played out at our meager tables, which is redemption in the flesh.
Two Years Ago: Rhubarb-Strawberry filled Lime Cupcakes