Friday, August 10, 2012

Savory Taste

How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth! (Psalm 119:103 NAS)

Umami Map
Some of us probably already know that besides the four basic tastes of sweet, sour, bitter and salty, is a fifth—umami. Umami is the Japanese word for delicious flavor, considered by some as the strong savory taste associated with meats and other rich or high-protein foods.

Among the many foods said to provide the umami taste are duck and other poultry, aged beef, venison, eggs, aged cheese, fish and shellfish, tomatoes, mushrooms, asparagus and walnuts. Ingredients that can be used to add the umami taste to dishes include dried seaweed, freshly grated parmesan cheese, mushrooms such as dried shiitake, sundried tomatoes and tomato paste.

Not all foods that provide the umami taste however are healthy, but what makes umami so special to the health-conscious cooks is its ability to enhance flavors. Since there is no need to use much of such ingredients to get the taste, it can be used to boost flavor while reducing fat and salt in recipes. This is according to Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D. who wrote ‘When you crave a savory taste, you want umami’ at the Nutrition-wise blog of MayoClinic.com.

Like umami which adds savory to the taste in enhancing flavors, if we set aside time each day to savor the sweetness of God’s word, we will also get to taste the goodness of our Lord. The psalmist said, “O taste and see that the LORD is good; how blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!” (Psalm 34:8). “How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Psalm 119:103).

Have we been missing out in savoring the word of God? If we have, we are missing out a lot more than we think. For the word of God is alive and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, joints and marrow, able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4:12). It is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, reproof, correction and training in righteousness that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Are we equipped for God’s work?

Some of us may think there is no need for us to be equipped for God’s work so long as we are serving Him in Christian ministries. Others may feel that because we are neither teachers nor ministers, there is no need to be equipped. None of these thoughts or feelings however is correct because if we do not equip ourselves with the word of God, how shall we be able to defend ourselves against the enemies?

Jesus, when He was tempted by the devil, used the Scripture to defend Himself (Matthew 4:7, 10). What about us? Do we know enough of God’s word to defend ourselves? For unlike the many different foods and ingredients that can provide the umami taste, there is only one way to understand God’s precepts for us to savor the taste that is sweeter than honey—the word of God. If we therefore hope to get a boost in our spiritual lives while reducing our mistakes and wrongdoings, then we must not neglect to study the word of God so as to live a Spirit-filled life in Christ.

Thank You dear Lord for giving us Your word. Your word O Lord is our delight for it is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. Guide us Lord by Your word in all we do that we may taste of Your goodness and be blessed. Renew in us Lord the desire to learn from Your word daily that we may be adequate and equipped for every good work.

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