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This week we continued our exploration of the connections between food and faith with a classic passage. When Jesus speaks of Salt and Light, we do well to pay attention to means and ends, things of primary and secondary importance. We reflected on taste, imagined, and were inspired to seek a life of flavor and illumination.
This week we focused on the familiar passage of Matthew 5. In this passage, Jesus speaks of Salt and Light, and how these two ideas interplay with life. During this service, we had an experiment where two pieces each of cantaloupe and chocolate were placed in front of us. We ate the first pieces and considered their taste, and then ate the second pieces with a bit of salt on them. We reflected on how the salt brought out and enhanced the natural flavors of the food subtly.
During the time period in which Jesus was speaking, salt was considered an expensive commodity that could be used to pay a person's salary. The value of salt, as both a preservative and a palate enhancer, was exponential. However, we considered that in large amounts, salt is overwhelming to the senses. Salt was never meant to be the main course, but is only a seasoning. We then applied this idea of salt's identity to the concept of the divine. Perhaps faith is meant to enhance life rather than replace it, just as salt enhances food rather than acts as food's substitute. In religion, oftentimes faith is presented as a replacement for the lives we currently have. This use of religion is overwhelming to our lives and can create toxic environments. Instead, in this passage faith can be understood as a way to enhance the good qualities already present in our lives.
We are a misfit faith community that gathers in DeLand on Sundays at 5pm. Come as you are.
We value highly the metaphor of journey. We’re different people from different places and backgrounds, representing an intergenerational community, and we’ve traveled different paths. So, we agree not to make assumptions about the person across from us, next to us, or in conversation with us. We challenge ourselves to be sensitive, knowing this community includes a diverse group of people from life-long followers of Jesus, to people who are just now open to the idea that God might exist. We strive to avoid offense, ask good questions, articulate and explain our responses. We don’t assume fluency in bible, spirituality, or Church language, because we believe the message of Jesus is not for Christianity, but for humanity. So, we do everything in the spirit of love and grace.
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