Psa. 34:8 ¶ O taste and see that the LORD is good;
How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!
When I was a child, I lived with my family in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico. In our back yard was a very large avocado tree that was always loaded with an abundance of large avocados. My mom and dad loved avocados and served them often. I can remember them going on and on about how delicious these avocados were and when they ate them, seemed to be in some sort of ecstasy. I didn’t get it, no matter how they were prepared, these avocados tasted like soap to me. I couldn’t stand eating those avocados. I can’t remember how it happened, but at some point everything changed. I acquired a taste for avocados, and since that time, they have become one of my favorites. That is how it is with spiritual things. Many people know they need more spiritual input (Bible study, prayer, church attendance) but they just don’t get it. Others seem to be enjoying their spiritual activities (some seem to be experiencing something like avocado ecstasy). What makes the difference? How do you “acquire” the taste? Jonathan Edwards often spoke of “tasting and seeing” spiritual realities. Here is something he said about the power of spiritual taste.
“The first effect of the power of God in the heart in REGENERATION, is to give the heart a Divine taste or sense; to cause it to have a relish of the loveliness and sweetness of the supreme excellency of the Divine nature; and indeed this is all the immediate effect of the Divine Power that there is, this is all the Spirit of God needs to do, in order to a production of all good effects in the soul. If God, by an immediate act of His, gives the soul a relish of the excellency of His own nature, other things will follow of themselves without any further act of the Divine power than only what is necessary to uphold the nature of the faculties of the soul. He that is once brought to see, or rather to taste, the superlative loveliness of the Divine Being, will need no more to make him long after the enjoyment of God, to make him rejoice in the happiness of God, and to desire that this supremely excellent Being may be pleased and glorified.”
What Edwards was saying, and what the Bible teaches is this. The Lord will bring divine influence upon our soul. This influence is sometimes called the saving grace of God. This grace gives us a taste of the preciousness of Christ. Once you get this taste, you are on your way. From that time on, no one will need to press you to follow after God. It will be in your heart. You will be looking for opportunities to pursue those spiritual activities you used to avoid. That brings me back to the avocados in Puerto Rico. My mom used to nag me and make me eat my avocados. You know the drill, the gagging would last until one of us gave up. That all changed the day I began to love those avocados. From that time on i joined in on the “avocado ecstasy”. My mom never nagged me about avocados again, I had stepped into the joy.