Babette's Feast, Unconditional Love & Generosity

I watched the tail end of one of my favorite movies last night: Babette s Feast. I absolutely love that whole feast sequence. I was powerfully moved by Babette s selfless generosity to do what she loves doing: being a chef. She generously and sacrificially spent all 10,000 francs of her lottery winnings to give 12 people the feast of their lives. I believe in divine timing. Just that day I was wrestling with being a pastor. Lately, it has been a real struggle serving the church. I went for a therapeutic ride on my motorcycle and just prayed as I glided through the dusk. I heard, in my heart, the words, Do you love me? Then feed my sheep. Don t feed on my sheep! I then realized that I m still far from being a selfless servant who is willing to serve without reward and to love unconditionally without strings attached or expectations to fulfill. I ve a long way to go. But I want to get there. Jesus loves the church and gave himself up for her. Paul didn t want to burden his churches, not as a power trip, but because he loved them. So, like Babette, I aspire to feed and nurture and love people, not because I want or expect something in return, but because this is what a servant does. This is what a lover does. I m thankful that my mindless, vegetative channel-surfing turned into an artistic, creative, divine lesson that service is an inspiring work of art, that giving generously is a beautiful, gracious act never to be regretted.

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