Our senses guide us as we move through the world and animate our path as we go. We see colors, objects, and people. The background noise of our home and neighborhood plays on as if a soundtrack to our lives. We experience the tactile nature of things around us, and even smell the delicious aroma of our kitchens. We’re driven by our senses, and can sometimes be led into sin by them.
All sin is not sensual, but it’s these kinds of sins that are easiest to understand. The allure of the temptation draws us into a false reality, and we act on it. In those final moments before we commit, we become lost and confused.
If only in those moments before we err, we could so vividly remember what it’s like to taste and see the goodness of the Lord. It’s a phrase we’ve heard many times, perhaps so many that it’s become trite. But if we pull back the words and contemplate the meaning, it’s plain to see that there’s something very relatable.
We know what it means to taste something really delicious. We’ve all shared the experience of eating a freshly baked Christmas cookie or that first bite of steak hot off the grill. But what does it mean to taste and see the goodness of the Lord?
In the first place, we experience it physically. When we receive the Eucharist, we literally taste God. Although the flavor profile is flat, the essence of that meal is anything but. We’re not only touching our Creator, we’re receiving Him physically within us, to dwell in a material and physical way.
In a more figurative way, to taste is to experience. A taste would be a small part, or even the first part, of an experience. Sitting on a roller coaster, as you ascend to the first drop, hearing the clack-clack-clack of the chain along the way, you get your first experience of that ride. You feel the seat in motion, the ambient temperature, and the wind starting to blow through your hair. You get that first taste of what this ride is going to be like.
So, too, with God. The goodness and glory of God is so full and so complete, that if we were to merely get a taste, we’d be fulfilled all the days of our life. God’s invitation to experience His love, perfections, and goodness doesn’t require our full commitment. It’s not necessary for us to go the full distance, the first mile, or even to take the first step. If we were to make the tiniest forward motion towards God, and taste just a portion of HIs goodness, that taste would satisfy us.
It’s easy for to fall into the trap of “tomorrow,” especially when we’re young. The truth is, we don’t know if tomorrow will come. We have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Are we brave enough to take that first taste?