For what we are about to receive

    “For what we are about to receive, may the Lord make us truly thankful, Amen”

When I lived at home we had to say ‘grace’ before every meal. I now believe it meant more than religious sentiment, more than thanking ‘God’ for our food.
In a growing secular society we no longer say grace before we eat our meals. However, it does beg the question, are we truly thankful? Or do we take it for granted that our shops will be filled with an abundance of food that we can obtain 24/7, (well, for most of us who live in cities).

I think we need to say thanks before cooking and eating a meal. Thank you to the farmers and hunters who toiled to bring the food to you, thank you to the person who took the time to create the dish you are eating.

Thank you to the bees who pollinated plants in order to propagate and fruit, to farmers who take the gamble EVERY year with the weather to produce crops so that we can eat. (A friend said to me once, “never knock a farmer when your mouth is full.”) The never ending stress of watching weather, watching stock market prices, government policies both nationally and internationally all contribute to how much food a farmer can produce and what money, if any, he/she will make that year.
What is food now? What do we have to be thankful for? We can fill our empty bellies with cheap empty calories and be sated for a while. You need to ask, is it healthy, do you know what you are eating, did we work for it, where did it come from and are we getting value for money?

In days of yore, food was hard work to obtain, to grow, to have. We relied on weather, the means and the access. When people sat down to eat they were truly thankful because they worked for their food either as farmers or as a person making the money to buy the food.

Eating: the whole process could be a family gathering: shopping for the food, planning and preparing the menu and meal and eating it together. Eating a pre-prepared processed meal in front of the telly is not quite the same is it? As they said in the movie, ‘The Castle’, “the telly should definitely be turned down.”
How thankful are we for our food when some reports of wasted food suggest we throw out $5.2 billion worth of food annually in Australia. Moreover, in spite of ‘easy farming’ of animals half of our world is still starving.

The devastation on our environment because of this is worthy of our attention as well. For more information regarding these issues check out:

secondbite.org/food-waste-and-the-environment

I can quietly give thanks for the food I eat and the journey it has taken to reach my plate. My private moment to appreciate the food I eat that keeps me alive.

Amen to that!

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