Thursday, June 11, 2009

Salt to Taste?

I've been thinking a lot about Salt this week.

I posted a story from my childhood about Salt here .

As you can probably guess, the impetus for my salt fixation comes from a famous passage I read in Sacred Space Tuesday morning. I read it in a different translation to usual, the Message.

"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You've lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage."

"Here's another way to put it: You're here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We're going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don't think I'm going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I'm putting you on a light stand. Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven."

Salt, when used properly is a flavor enhancer, it makes the natural flavors of the food shine through. A dish that is over salted is not a pleasure on the palate. I would rather consume bland, under seasoned food, than something that has been covered in salt.

I like the way that Eugene Peterson (translator of the Message) says we are here to '..bring out the God flavors of the earth'. Some Christians seem to live as if their purpose was to make the world as 'salty' as possible. Anything or anyone that doesn't fit in with their definition of Christianity tends to get 'a-salted'. Everything and everyone has to look and taste the same.

A bland dish can be improved, but it's difficult to save a dish that has been over salted. I think of friends of mine who were so offended by encounters with Christians that were zealous in prosyletizing their flavor of Christianity, that they rejected all forms.

Now I know that the Medium is not always the Message, but how we say things is as important as what we say.

Nobody wants a mouthful of salt

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