For a variety of reasons, lately I’ve been pondering a graphic representation of community. What image correlates with the idea of gathering together in true biblical fellowship? The one thing that keeps coming to mind: casseroles.

Maybe it’s my Southern heritage. Or the fact that almost all of my fondest memories involve food. Or that I’ve been raised by a family of great cooks. Whatever the reason, when I think of belonging, community, fellowship, and togetherness, I invariably think of good food. Whether the occasion is joyful or mournful, once-in-a-lifetime or everyday, I feel a calling to choose the perfect side dish or dessert.

Why does food bring us together? Why do most of our social gatherings involve eating? And why, when Jesus was giving His disciples a way to remember Him, did He tell them to remember him by eating and drinking? I think it’s a way of making the association between nourishment for the body (food) and nourishment for the spirit (community). Both are vital to our existence, but God in His infinite creativity makes them fun at the same time. Kind of like sex.