This afternoon before a quick trip to the grocery store, I put lasagna in the oven. (Yes, frozen). I picked up a few things for a salad and some bread from the bakery to complete dinner. Brian and I are 8 days in to our 21 day vegetable fast (see awake21.org) so I prepared a split pea soup which simmered on the stove for the two of us. I will admit it looked terrible and didn’t taste much better. When I walked in the door with arms full of groceries, my three kids sat at the table playing cards. Kelly said, “Mom, what is for dinner and please don’t say lasagna?” In my best-ever Kevin Leman approach, I said, “No, for you there is split pea soup.” While the other kids enjoyed their lasagna, Kelly had to choke down her pea soup. Needless to say, lesson learned. She admitted she would LOVE to have lasagna.
Life lesson: Be thankful
I remember one Mother’s Day when Brian was on staff at a large church as a youth pastor with a very comfortable salary, I complained to God wishing we had “normal” jobs so I could spend Mother’s Day with my Mom. The next year, I got my wish! Brian lost his job and was without a church staff position for eight months! I was desperate for the days of comfort that I had once lamented. As I pondered the day’s events, I thought about Kelly’s dinner, and two lessons came to light. First, so many times we want MORE and feel so dissatisfied. It is so important that we stop and thank God for our lives now, today, this instant. The sudden death of a loved one, an illness diagnosis, the loss of a job, the crumbling of a marriage, the betrayal of a friend, or the leaving of a prodigal can make us wish to reclaim the times we now lament. Secondly, I am reminded of the story of Paul and Silas who were beaten and thrown into prison, yet sang praises to God. (Acts 16:23-26) Remember, as they praised God in their difficult circumstances, God delivered them in an amazing way that brought the miracle of salvation to an entire family. I Thessalonians 5:18 sums it up well saying, “No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” God could be using your difficult circumstances as a testimony to the lives of others. You cannot know what tomorrow holds. So, whether it is lasagna or split pea soup, be thankful.