Luke 19:5 “When Jesus came by, He looked up at Zacchaeus and called him by name. ‘Zacchaeus!’ He said. ‘Quick, come down! I must be a guest in your home today.’”

Zaccheus wanted to see Jesus so he climbed up a tree to view Jesus walking by. Jesus spotted him and invited himself over to dinner. Why did Jesus want to eat with Zacchaeus? He wanted Zacchaeus to know He accepted him. Jesus signaled to Zacchaeus that He wanted to build a relationship with him. A meal was a symbol of social acceptance and friendship. Jesus blessed Zacchaeus over a meal.

Meals together are still a blessing. Eating together is less popular in modern culture
-46 % of Americans eat dinner alone
-37% eat while on the phone
-52% eat while working

But studies show that meals with friends and family are good for the soul – and even your health. People of all ages eat better when they share a meal with others. They tend to eat more fruits and vegetables and other nutrient-rich foods. They also eat less fried foods and drink less pop. Eating together gives young children the chance to learn more words and how to communicate better.

Other benefits for kids and teens include:
-healthier eating into adulthood
-healthier body weight
-lower risk of disordered eating
-less use of cigarettes, drugs, and alcohol
-fewer behavior problems
-better self-esteem and less depression
-better grades and higher scores on achievement tests at school

Take time this week to bless someone by taking time to eat with them. Invite someone over to your home or take someone out to lunch. May you be a blessing this week to others over a meal. May we all bless each other this Sunday, March 15th as we share in a “Pot-Blessing” after worship. Bring a dish to share and enjoy food and fellowship this Sunday.

In Christ’s Love and Service,
Pastor Paul