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Taking Culinary Chances

Posted: May 11, 2016 | Author: Fr. Leo

I never considered myself a "lucky" guy. I don't win at games of chance - not even BINGO! How ironic that this past weekend, I was invited to Cleveland to speak and present a cooking demonstration for the Catholic Charities Kentucky Derby-themed fundraising "Derby for Dollars" dinner at the Hard Rock Casino, and it was a weekend all about taking chances.

How ironic that a priest was asked to present at a casino club with such a provocative name to support Catholic Charities!?!

So, that's what I did. I arrived the airport mid-morning and had enough time to grab lunch. I could have gone for a quick bite, but I decided to explore something new - which I don't usually like doing alone. But, I always wanted to go to an Iron Chef Michael Symon restaurant knowing I'd at least get some great BBQ, so I did just that, going to Mabel's BBQ in downtown Cleveland. When I got to his restaurant, it was packed!  But there was one seat at the bar.  I took it - even though it's not my normal way of eating.  In other words, I was taking some culinary chances.

My delicious BBQ meal at Chef Symon's restaurant. 

Half way through my delicious BBQ meal, I heard a gregarious laugh, turned around, and saw it was Chef Michael Symon! 


Me with Iron Chef Michael Symon. What a great encounter!

We exchanged a few pleasant conversations and he even asked me to email him personally to share with him some of my other work with Grace Before Meals and The Table Foundation. Amazing - all because I was willing to explore, stretch myself, and yes, take a chance. 

I don't really believe in "luck" but rather "providence."  While we have to make sure we don't "test" God, we have to trust Him and in some cases, take a "leap of faith." That's what happened to me at this restaurant, and I'm so glad I took it!

Let us pray:

Dear God, we sometimes have more fear than trust.  We think that spending more time in prayer, or going to church and learning about our faith is a waste of time, rather than a real leap of faith. In our busy lives, help us not to play games when it comes to our relationship with you, but rather to trust and invest and, at times take a leap of faith and do something that helps spread the Good News - even if it means taking a chance. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Food for Thought:

(1) Did your horse win at the Kentucky Derby?
(2) What's the difference between taking a "leap of faith" and taking a chance?
(3) What area in your life requires more trust in God?