Gordon is in that phase where he puts everything in his mouth. I’m constantly saying things like:
Don’t eat that (fuzz, leaf, bug, shoe, rug, cat toy…) or
Don’t put your mouth on the (floor, foot stool, toilet bowl…).
But when it comes to dinner time, I want him to try new foods. I find myself saying things like:
Oooh, green beans. We love green beans! or
Wow, look at the pretty carrot. Why don’t you taste it?
It’s a wonder the poor kid doesn’t stay confused. After all, that colorful fuzz probably looks just as good as the pureed beans, if not better.
Taste and See
This makes me think of one of my favorite Scriptures:
“O taste and see that the LORD is good” (Psalm 34:8a NAS).
David wrote this passage when he was held captive by King Achish of Gath in 1 Samuel 21:10-15. Instead of whining about his perilous circumstances, though, he praised God for what He had already done for him:
- God had answered him and delivered him from all his fears (v. 4)
- God had heard him and saved him from all his troubles (v. 6)
- God had encamped around him and rescued him (v. 7)
After testifying of God’s wonderful deeds toward him, David encouraged others (including us) to “taste and see that the Lord is good” (v. 8).
David trusted that God would treat others with the same care, love, and attention that he had experienced.
The Evidence of Taste
Have you ever noticed how much we talk about food? A lot! But I bet you’ve never heard a conversation like this one:
Don’t try the dip. It’s awful!
How do you know?
I tasted it.
But how do you know it’s bad.
Ummm…I tasted it. It tastes bad.
But what’s your proof? Did you conduct an experiment? Can you explain in scientific terms why it’s “bad”? Can you….
[Friend walks away shaking her head…..]
To say something tastes good, bad, salty, sweet, savory, etc., is evidential proof in itself. No further studies need to be done. No further explanation is needed. We trust others (even strangers) when they say, “Don’t eat that one” or “Ooh, you’ve gotta try that!”
In the same way, David is telling us that he has “tried God.” He knew God when he was a shepherd boy, when he became a national hero, and when he served as a king. David knew God personally, intimately. That’s why he danced before God’s presence and meditated on His Law.
“How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Psalm 119:103 NAS).
Still, David doesn’t want us to take his word for it—he encourages us to reach out and experience God for ourselves. He wants us to internalize God, just as we would internalize bread or a spoonful of honey. And he wants us to chew on God’s Word (which is what the word “meditate” means).
Accepting the Challenge
There are a lot of things in life we are better off avoiding—mind-altering substances, idols, gossip, and every sinful activity. And yet we are not deprived! Instead, we are brought before the most bountiful table, overflowing with every good spiritual fruit, and encouraged to take and eat. To savor and enjoy. To have our own intimate experiences with the Creator of the Universe and Lover of Our Souls, with whom there is no want or fear.
This week, I encourage you to accept David’s challenge. Think about all the times God has responded to your prayers, saved you from trials, and provided for your needs. Knowing what God has done for you in the past, do you trust Him with your present and your future? Do you believe that God will take care of others as much as He takes care of you? If so, then be ready to share your testimony so you can encourage others to experience God’s goodness for themselves.
“Like cold water to a weary soul, so is good news from a distant land” (Proverbs 25:25 NAS).