Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Rev. Klockers: Enjoying my wife’s lefse and God’s hospitality

| December 2, 2021 1:00 AM

Matthew, chapter 22, verses 1, 2, 8-10 says, “Once more Jesus spoke to them in parables, saying: ‘The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son. Go therefore into the main streets, and invite everyone you find to the wedding banquet.’ Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both good and bad; so the wedding hall was filled with guests.”

I was sick a lot as a child. I had constant colds, ear infections and a sore throat that wouldn’t go away, and generally felt lousy. It wasn’t until I became much older that I discovered what truly ails me. I have food sensitivities/allergies. Through a long process of trial and error, I discovered that bad things happen to my body when I eat dairy and corn.

The problem is that one or both of these seem to be in most processed foods. As a result, my wife and I had to become educated in knowing about ingredients and diligent about reading labels.

For dairy, there are the obvious offenders like milk, yogurt, cheese, butter, buttermilk, cream, sour cream, and ice cream. However, the less obvious needed to be added: whey, lactose, casein, nougat, paneer, margarine (milk proteins are in most brands, but not all), and artificial or natural flavors (may contain butter). Unfortunately, that’s just the short list.

Then there is that other thing – corn: popcorn, cornstarch, cornbread, and high fructose corn syrup. However, one should add vegetable oil, corn sugars (such as dextrose, dextrin, maltodextrin, fructose, glucose, sorbitol), and baking powder. Unfortunately, the complete list is more extensive.

When I eat out, I realize that dairy and corn are in almost everything. So, I need to minimize the amount of these items in order to continue to feel well. This is challenging but not impossible to achieve.

Please don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining here, and I don’t consider myself a “victim.” It is what it is, and I’ve accepted it. All I would ask is that people understand. Nothing more.

Thankfully, my lovely wife does look out for me. For example, she has a special recipe for lefse. She likes to make it during the holidays. Instead of using butter and heavy cream, she makes mashed potatoes with plant butter and rice milk. Flour is added to make the dough.

This article began with the story of the wedding banquet from Matthew’s Gospel. In it, Jesus tells something about the Kingdom of God. Everyone is invited, even if they consider themselves sinful or far from perfect.

The food of this banquet will be fit for everyone who accepts. Nothing to be allergic to at the table. All will be given the same food of God’s grace. So, pass it around.

I am sure there will be lefse.

Walter is pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Moses Lake and has served as parish pastor for more than 30 years.

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