Hate to dine alone? Many people do. No worries. If you don't have a date for dinner, you can now dine with a Moomin.
Wait, a what?!
Moomins are a family of white, anime, hippo-like characters created by Finnish illustrator and writer Tove Jansson. They've been around for decades, and have increased in popularity around the world, especially in anime-obsessed Japan, where Moomin House Cafes are catering to the solitary diner.
In a nod to the growing isolation of Japan's workaholic labor force, giant, plush-toy Moomins are brought to the tables of solo diners in an effort to spare them the "awkward perils" of dining alone.
The original Moomin cafe opened in 2001, but pictures of diners "enjoying" the company of Moomins have recently gone viral, creating a huge surge in the cafe's popularity. There are now three locations, with more on the horizon, if their "anti-loneliness" concept proves to be more than a passing fad.
Click here to see a diner with her Moomin companion.
Yes, Moomins are cute, but it seems a stretch to suggest they can quell the "awkward perils" of loneliness.
The truth is, even real people aren't able to satisfy our need to be perfectly loved and fully accepted. For that we must seek the companionship of the only person who is actually capable of meeting these deeper, spiritual needs. To every lonely heart, Jesus says, "Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends" (Revelation 3:20, NLT).
A Moomin might fill an empty seat, but only Jesus can fill an empty heart. Open your heart to Him and you will never have to fear the "awkward perils" of loneliness again!