Sometimes the things we read in the Bible can sound a bit strange to our modern ears. For example, Psalm 34:8 tells us to: “Taste and see that the Lord is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in Him!” Alright - so the psalmist wants us to “taste” the Lord. That’s not an instruction that sounds normal to most of us, because we tend to associate the word “tasting” with food and drink. So when we read this verse with our modern mindset, it can sound like a strange thing for us to do.
However, over the years this verse has become one of my favorites precisely for that reason - because of how I connect it to eating. Here’s what I mean: when we're eating something really good, we like to take our time so that we can fully experience it. So we pay attention to what we're eating, being intentional to enjoy every bite. We enjoy the smell, the sight, and the actual taste of it. In other words, we slow down and try to make the experience last as long as we can.
On the other hand, when we're eating something quickly, or on the run, or that we don't think is special, we can often eat it without even tasting it. We don't pay attention to what it is we're shoveling in our mouths - we just have to get it in and get going. It’s usually the approach we take when we're eating fast food. It’s not something we take a lot of time to “experience".
With that reference to eating in mind, we can go back and read Psalm 34:8, and see a clear correlation to our relationship with God. For example, all too often we approach God like we approach fast food. We know we need to nourish ourselves spiritually, so we rush through it - not really focused on what it is that we're doing. I think this is what the psalmist is getting at when he tells us to slow down, take time, and experience God. We need to be intentional as we take time to taste and see that He is good. And then he finishes the passage by telling us that if we do this, we will find joy. I don’t know about you, but joy is something I definitely need more of in my life - so this sounds like a really good plan.
So today, let's find ways to slow down and take time to truly experience God. And as we do this, let’s ask Him to help us see, and be refreshed by, how good He truly is.