I love to feed people. I am a proud product of the great Hospitality State and believe hospitality to be somewhat of a genetic quality. I got it from my mom and she got it from hers and so on and so forth. My great grandma always had a pot of coffee going and something sweet to counteract the bitter, black brew.
Growing up, my mom always made the best snacks for me and my friends. You couldn’t go just anywhere and enjoy the kind of buffet my mom set out on the table: brownies, chips, sandwiches and soda… what more could a pre-teen ask for? Who am I kidding? I still love the stuff. Even though a few of my more notorious friends would spill soda on the carpet, it was still a joy for her to host, offering her gifts of hospitality.
Cooking has become a huge part of my life; so too has feeding the people I love. It’s no longer enough for me to feed people pizza. Every person needs to have their own personally designed pie with freshly made Neapolitan-style dough in a kitchen that’s too small to keep up. We have a poster in our kitchen by artist Nikki McClure that says “Share Your Table” (see the full poster below). It is a testament to the kind of people we want to be.
Love looks like a lot of different things. Serving another person makes the “love” list in my book. Serving also happens to be part of my day job. There are people in this world that aren’t exactly my favorite, but I’ve found a freedom in serving the people who aren’t going to say thank you. I believe it to be one of the noblest occupations.
I love the fact that people always hang out in the kitchen. It’s cramped and gets bloody hot in the summertime; but it’s also cozy, and people know that good things usually come out of kitchens. There is nothing I love more than one of our rooms full of people eating, especially if it’s something I’ve worked hard to give them. In a sense you’re feeding them with more than food. You’re feeding them your history.
After all, eating is the great equalizer. Food is the most basic human need. What better way to enter life with the beloved of God than by feeding them, pulling up another chair and keeping their glasses full?