The Wine Kitchen

Given the season, I wanted to repost this wonderful piece from Dana on the Passover meal and the Last Supper. It's also fitting because I am taking about her today while I speak on the subject of hospitality to some fantastic Texas women. Right after last week’s sermon, my good friend, Dana Tuttle, and I were reflecting on something our pastor said. Dana was making such great connections, I suggested that she write an article for my blog. I’m so glad she did! In between her mom of 6-year-old-twin-boys gig, Dana delivered the goods. I introduce to you Dana’s first blog appearance as a housewife theologian: images-4Recently, I enjoyed a great dining experience with family and friends at The Wine Kitchen in Frederick, Maryland. We joined two families together, along with friends, to celebrate a birthday. As the food was served and the wine was poured in this comfortable atmosphere, we began to relax, eat, drink and share. Before long, we were all tasting each other’s meal choices, and sipping different wines.  Arms were crossing, forks were stabbing and lots of  “yum” noises were being made from one end of the table to the other. We were becoming family and as the mother of the birthday girl said, “There was love all around the table.” The Wine Kitchen did not disappoint. Just as they claimed on their website, “We have always believed the most comfortable and inviting room in the house is the kitchen. We also notice all good parties inevitably end up in the kitchen. So we invite you to visit our kitchen, to enjoy our comforting hospitality, food, and wine. We have created a relaxed, inviting place for friends and family to gather and explore the world of food and wine with us.” And that is exactly what we experienced that evening! Rarely after a meal at a restaurant do I wake up the next day and think about how good the bite of steak was, or how enjoyable my glass of red wine was, or the Riesling that had a hint of honey and flowers, but it was all that I could think about! I continued to savor all the flavors in my mind as I made my way to church that morning. I was looking forward to the service that would conclude with Christ’s invitation to his table to share a meal and wine with him among my family of fellow believers. I was unaware of how my pastor’s message would connect all the thoughts in my head and my experience at dinner. He is currently preaching through the gospel of Mark and was at the place where Jesus conducted the Passover meal with his disciples the night before his arrest and crucifixion. My pastor briefly made some interesting observations about the Passover meal. He mentioned the 4 cups of wine that are customarily served during the meal and pointed out how Jesus, after instituting the New Covenant in his blood with the 3rd cup, then declares, “I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until the day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom” (Mat. 26:29). He makes the observation that Jesus did not drink the last cup and left the meal unfinished. He encouraged us to look forward to finishing the meal with him in his Kingdom. This really got my brain working and I was compelled to go straight home and do some more research on the custom of the 4 cups of wine in the Passover meal. As a Jew, Jesus observed the Passover meal every year as required by the Law of Moses. From the time of Moses, Jews have celebrated the Passover in the same way. There is a set order of service that has varied little for more than 3,500 years. The 4 cups of wine that are served during the meal represent the 4 promises of God in Exodus 6:6-7, “I will bring you out…I will deliver you…I will redeem you…I will acquire you…” They are called The Cup of Sanctification, The Cup of Plagues, The Cup of Redemption (this 3rd cup is where Jesus instituted the “new covenant in my blood”), and The Cup of Completion (this 4th cup is the one Jesus refused). Yes, it is true that Christ’s redemptive work is finished (3rd cup), but there still remains a cup of completion when Jesus will drink again with us in The Wine Kitchen of his Heavenly Father. As Michael Horton says in his book, The Gospel Driven Life, “For on that day, Christ will be the Host rather than the Meal and we will eat and drink with him in an everlasting exchange of gifts.” The theme of eating and drinking in the presence of God is continual from the garden in Genesis to the Marriage supper in Revelation. Christ himself proclaims, “The Son of man came eating and drinking…” (Matt.11:19). And Proverbs shouts of Wisdom’s invitation to her table, “Come eat of my bread and drink of the wine I have mixed. Leave your simple ways, and live and walk in the way of insight” (Proverbs 9:1-6). A seat has been reserved for you! You have been invited to The Wine Kitchen of the Heavenly Father where his Son, Jesus Christ awaits to complete the meal with you. There is one more cup to drink. Will you drink it with him? Dana Tuttle is a housewife theologian who is obsessed with headless queens. She is the mother of 7-year-old twin boys, and the wife of King Henry, ahem, she meant to say Troy. She daydreams about owning a pub, but is happy with her role as the crazy theme mom and scrapbooking fool. Dana is an over-achiever in Book Review Club, and can often be found hiding in her closet reading books written by dead theologians while eating the latest leftover holiday candy.