Praises be he was wrong. In fact, some of the meals we partook of in Senegal rated highly on my list of most-excellent meals, regardless where from.
Gayle, Matt’s wife, dined us like princes during our stay and never once could we recall of being hungry. As a matter of fact, we each carried all sorts of makeshift meals from America just in case (Ethan packed an entire minute market), but when it became time to depart; nearly all of our precautionary foods were left behind for our friends.
I’ve included the cool pictures of our meals for you to take note of, just in case you too travel there one day. Should you also fear the dietary provisions of the Senegalese I would advise to save the room in your bags for real luggage, but then, I think our hosts will enjoy what you leave behind… so pack to your heart’s content.
If so, rest assured that your eyes aren’t deceiving you; there are no plates. I think there were only spoons to accommodate our dilettante-Dioula-dining-habits.
The meal was marvelous. We filled our stomachs, and then began with our escorts our journey back to our rooms for the evening.
We would learn a little more of Senegalese culture the next morning from Matt. His explanation for the way the people eat, and yes, nearly every meal is consumed from one large bowl by everyone, was illuminating. I suppose I will always remember Matt’s words, “The people here share what gives life.”
Did you catch that? The people share what gives life. Hence, food gives life so they share from one bowl.
I can only fathom where a good follower of Jesus will take that short seven word sentence. Not claiming anything of the sort here for this author, but I will still take a stab at it.
Masses of biblical overload coursed my mind with Matt’s descriptive of the Senegalese dining habits, such as:
“I Am the bread of life… that comes down from heaven… I came to give life; abundantly.” I also couldn’t help but ponder how neatly does this align with our observance of the Lord’s Supper? We share the One who gives life!
This will not by far be the last time Senegalese cultural practices remind me of biblical-like principles. In many ways, it seemed as though we were sent back in time to a place where biblical customs were the norm, but then, those will be for another day.
Any thoughts of your own on how the words, “The people here share what gives life” take meaning for us as believers in Jesus Christ?