(She’s winking because she knew a lot of life secrets . . . )

Last week, I shared the three main lessons I’ve learned from our sweet girl, Ellie – our yellow Labrador Retriever who died unexpectedly of cancer a few weeks ago.

We spoke of the importance of play, how incredibly critical it is for us to just slow down and have fun with our families. I know I am guilty of just trying to get it all done so I can have some “me” time that sometimes, I get grouchy if stuff (i.e. family demands) get in my way.

In my attempts to check-off the list, I check-out of real life.

It’s in the journey, friends. Process, not product.

So often, it seems as though I spend 90% of my domestic time planning for meals, shopping for meals, putting away food that will be used for meals, prepping food for meals and well . . . actually making meals. Anyone else with me?

Sometimes they’re a hit, sometimes not so much. Honestly, in a house of picky-eaters, it’s the latter that’s more likely.

And I admit to more than a night or two of frustration, of throwing a dirty fork a little too hard in the sink and feeling like why even bother?

But the truth is . . . The bother speaks more than just about food.

My family may not remember the meals they ate, but they’ll remember the time we spent around the table.

My family may not know how much time goes into preparing breakfasts/lunches/dinners/snacks, but they know their needs will always be met and they’re safe.

My family may complain about the taste and texture but they won’t complain about the time and tenderness.

Time spent sharing meals is about so much more than just nourishment.

Dinner is more than food

I see so many families running to and fro and sometimes, we do, too. But when is enough enough? When do we say no to one more activity so we can say yes to a relaxed evening at home gathered around the table?

Margin is a dying art.

Psalm 34:8 says, “Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”

Yet I can’t help but wonder . . .

Can we really taste if we live in haste? Can we see how good He is if we are too busy to really look? Can we truly listen if we’re too distracted to hear?

No, dogs don’t sit around the dinner table and share their daily highs and lows. But they do understand that meal time is sacred time.

So why don’t we take a lesson from the dogs? If dinner is less than a success tonight, how about we look at what was good instead of what wasn’t (and I’m not talking about the food)? How about we have eyes to see the life going on around the table – even if someone is pouting or complaining about the beans on their plate? Because that’s the thing . . .

Real life happens around the dinner table. And ain’t nobody got time for anything less than real life.

Go ahead. Taste and see.



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