On Saturday, Feb. 22, people from all over will descend on New London to attend the 7th Annual New London Chamber of Commerce Beer Tasting Event. They get to sample specialty beers, unique wines & beverages, along with various hors d’ oeuvres. Like other food or wine or chocolate tasting events, this promises to delight those who attend. People love to taste great food, and if it has chocolate in it, that’s even better. Billions of dollars are spent by people each year on restaurants and events like this one. We love to eat out. And we love to sample great food.
Just mention something like freshly baked chocolate chip/chocolate chunk cookies, fresh out of the oven, and our mouth begins to water. We can almost taste one right now. I remember snitching them as a teen. And once you bite into the warm, gooey cookie, chock full of chocolate chips, it is an taste experience you will never forget.
King David in the Bible writes of some of his personal experiences in the psalms. He talks about his relationship with God. He tells of the many times God snatched him out of some disaster and delivered him. And then David invites us to personally test and see just how good God is. He says, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him” (Ps 34:8).
Taste God? How do you do that? It comes from having a personal relationship with God. Once you know (taste) God, you begin to know what he is like; what he thinks about you; what he has done for you; just how much God truly loves you. And once you personally experience just a little bit of God’s love, you’ll crave more.
Many people never give God a chance. They base what they know about God on what they “experienced” or “felt” in church. One bad or boring experience and they think God is boring, or worse, irrelevant to their life. Or they have a bad experience with a Christian, see one acting in an “unchristian like” manner, and that turns them off to God.
But one little act of kindness on our part, one genuine, encouraging word , one sincere gesture of love by a Christian, can leave a good taste in their mouth. It can even whet their appetite to want to know the Jesus who is the motivation behind our acts of love. People can actually see or “taste” God by what they see and hear from us. By our words and actions we want to leave a good taste for God in their mouths. How we live and talk and act, how we treat others at work, in school and among our friends and neighbors, either turns people on to God or turns them off from him. Now, we understand the importance of what Jesus was saying in Jn 13:34-35, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
And once we do that, they’ll want more of Jesus. That is why it is so important for us to have a personal relationship with Jesus by faith. And it’s important to grow in that relationship, like Peter says, “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” Once you’ve tasted how good the love of God is, you will want others to taste it too. So, let’s give people a taste of God. And once they taste and see just how good God really is, they’ll want more of him too.