Sometimes the rush of preparing the last dishes, or the lateness of some of the feasters, or a need for some to start eating before others have arrived keeps us from saying a blessing before we eat, and we interrupt the meal for a blessing or even say it after people have finished. At times people have asked if it’s too late to say a blessing after we have finished eating. I have responded with this passage: “When you have eaten and are full, then you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you” (Deuteronomy 8:10).
Is it better, then, to bless the Lord after we eat? The Lord Himself gave thanks before breaking bread (Luke 22:19, John 6:23). The simple answer is that there is no after or before. Angels don’t regret the past or worry about the future. “They say that the Lord gives them every moment what to think, and this with blessedness and happiness; and that they are thus free from cares and anxieties.” This is why we ask for “daily bread” in the Lord’s Prayer (Secrets of Heaven 2493). “A person who lives with love or who has goodwill keeps the Sabbath holy because then nothing is sweeter than to worship the Lord and glorify Him every day” (Secrets of Heaven 1798).
Daniel gave thanks three times a day (Daniel 6:10, 13), but the Lord’s gifts come to us more often: “In heaven the Lord gives heavenly food to angels moment by moment, thus perpetually and eternally.... If you can believe it, countless gifts are given every single moment” (Secrets of Heaven 5664). ...
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
When Should We Say the Blessing?
For this week's Bryn Athyn Post (PDF) Rev. John Odhner wrote a fun piece on when to say the blessing at a meal.