“Taking Dad to the Buffet”

By Pastor Rodney Tilley

I am sure by now that most of you have made plans on what you are going to do for this “Father’s Day.” You probably have bought your Dad that tool that will go on the shelf with the other tools that he doesn’t need and you will have bought that sentimental card that he will read and not understand, but either way, you will have done your part and then you can get to the main event of the day, and that is lunch.  You will ask him to go to the restaurant of his choice and if he is like most men, his favorite restaurant of choice is the “Grand Buffet.” The name does not matter, as long as it is the one with a large buffet. It is that place where you can stuff yourself to the point of sinning and go home sleepy because you ate too much. They have a large selection from which to choose, some healthy and some not so great, but you get to pick and choose only what you want and then you take it to your table and eat all that you can. Only in recent years could we indulge in such a frantic display of desire.

    Just a few years back, unless you were of royal birth, there was no such feasting. In fact, you had to eat what was served and you couldn’t get up from the table or leave the restaurant until you drank all of your buttermilk and ate your broccoli. My parents thought buttermilk was good for you, but for me the smell alone disturbed my colon and sent my esophagus into a convulsive spasm. If I want to eat spoiled food, I can join my cat in a nightly dish of “Nine Lives,” and meow all night. Until then, I will stick to the “Buffet” and the swirl of mixed ice cream.

    But for many, like the “Buffet,” the world of religion and the ideas at church are of the garden variety. You think you can pick what you like and leave the rest. You take a little of this and a little of that, and put it all together and it comes out fine. But God is not like that, for he may just like buttermilk. You may have to take and eat it all.

    You cannot take the love part and leave the aspect of trust. You cannot take the peace that God gives and leave the forgiveness toward your neighbor. You cannot take the parts that you like, and leave the rest, for then your trip to the “Buffet” of faith will leave you weighed down with only the sugars and cream. You also have to pinch your nose and with a prayer of thanks, drink the buttermilk of loving your enemy, and eat the broccoli of living holy, chaste lives. You may have to accept that eating at the table of our Lord involves swallowing the bread of sacrifice and the drink of compassion.

    In fact you have to ingest that Jesus said that there is only one way, and I am it. “Buffets” are great for the body, but for the soul, the two symbols of the broken body and shed blood of Christ is the meal that is set for kings and for paupers, and even for your father.

     So this year take your father to the potluck at church and eat Aunt Linda’s Brussels sprouts if you can stomach them, but remember to feast at the Lord’s Table and eat everything he has for this can be the best “Father’s Day” ever.

     For more information on “God the Father” please call: 432-207-0015.