Building One Another

E. Stanley Ott


September 17, 2013

Dear Friend,

Do you eat your meals rapidly or do you take your time? Mealtime today is often something we rush through, an interruption between Activity A and Activity B.  For Jesus, mealtime was an Activity A all by itself. Jesus often ate with his disciples and with many others.

“Here a dinner [deipnon] was given in Jesus' honor.  Martha served, while Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him.” John 12:2*

The Greek word deipnon is translated feast, banquet, supper, dinner.  Years ago I remember reading someone translate deipnon as “the lingering meal.”  It’s the opposite of “fast food!”

The deipnon was the main meal of the day and not just inserted between activities. It meant three things:  food, conversation, and lingering – and the food was secondary.  The primary function of the deipnon was to talk – to be "with" one another - to speak of what was happening in your lives and in the world around you.  

Furthermore, when we eat with fellow believers, our Lord joins us, "For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."  Matthew 18:20

There are few more effective and delightful ways to grow relationships and to build people than to enjoy a deipnon, a lingering meal with them. When you eat, slow down and linger:
                with anyone who lives in your home on a daily basis.
                                with those who are already friends of your heart.
                                                with those whom you would like to grow deeper in friendship.

One day you will share in the most wonderful lingering meal of them all: “Then the angel said to me, 'Write: 'Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!' ' And he added, 'These are the true words of God.'" Revelation 19:9

With joy - E. Stanley Ott
Copyright 2013 E. Stanley Ott
*Scripture from the NIV