It is Friday night, the beginning of a long holiday weekend. You and someone special decide to go out for dinner to relax and enjoy a good meal. Where is your go-to restaurant? And what is your favorite meal?
We are a society that enjoys good food. For some it might be a delicious steak with grilled asparagus. For others it is a big juicy bacon burger with blue cheese crumbles. How about a rack of hickory smoked baby back ribs? Or if you are a vegetarian, you might go for a spinach and strawberry salad with walnuts and balsamic dressing. Regardless of what your food of choice is, one thing is for sure, within a few hours you will be hungry once again. The food we eat, while it is enjoyable, and while it provides nourishment to our bodies, just never completely satisfies us. We need to eat again to stay nourished and healthy.
Scripture invites us to taste the goodness of God. In Psalm 34:8 we read this, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”
You might be familiar with that passage of scripture. The Hebrew word here for “taste” is Ta’am, which means to perceive, to evaluate, or the testing of what is good by the means of our sense of taste. The word “good” used here is defining God as kind, merciful, gracious. And the word “blessed” simply means happy, while the word “refuge” is to trust in, to put hope in.
To keep this verse in context we must also mention verses 9-10, which answers “why should we taste God?” question. Psalm 34:9 begins like this – “Fear the Lord, you his holy people.” Fear here is a healthy fear, not a fear that comes from being terrified. It is a fear that comes out of respect and reverence of God, and not wanting to offend Him. The reminder of verse 9 and all of verse 10 now answer the why question – “For those who fear him lack nothing. The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.”
What does all this mean? Just as you only know your favorite meal is delicious by actually eating it and tasting its goodness, this verse says to us that we should give God a chance, try Him out, and put all our trust in Him. And, in return, God promises to be merciful, kind, and gracious. He promises to be good. He promises to provide for all our needs.
So what is your favorite meal? Today, taste and see that the Lord is good!