|The recipe card..|
Bug didn’t do a proper inventory of ingredients before he started. So, some of the ingredients were missing. Fortunately, there were appropriate substitutes. Then, in his haste, he skipped recipe steps or moved faster than the recipes called (i.e. adding all the milk in at once instead of whisking it in in stages). He also missed the final step that called for the proper assembly on the recipe. When it came out, he was dejected and sad. He wouldn’t even try it at first and when he finally did, he was heartbroken. It wasn’t very good.
I sat down with him afterwards and told him him that he’d learned a very good lesson and reminded me of one as well. In kitchen recipes, like in life, you have to take inventory of you need, take your time, read the instructions, not go ahead of the instructions, and most importantly, complete the recipe.
- Take inventory of what you need. Bug was super excited to cook dinner and I asked him if he’d checked to see if he had everything he would need in the process. He confirmed he did until he actually started and found out that he did not. It’s the same in life. Before we tackle any challenge/task, we need to take inventory and see what that we are properly equipped to tackle that. Quick example: I was recently asked to take on the project scheduling of a major program undertaking. The software was something I was familiar with, but not nearly as well as I wanted to be. Before diving into the task, I took inventory and realized I needed some additional books, meeting with subject matter experts, and some internet research. When time came to begin the task, I was able to do so confidently. Bug was able to draw the parallel of needing his Bible and the Word of God as a day to day tool, just like needing the ingredients on the recipe card. Absolutely!
- Take your time. Bug has been in the kitchen before. He’s made plenty of yummy dishes, so he was a bit over confident. Instead of taking the time to properly arrange what he needed, he jumped in head first, He turned the stove up too high. He started cutting butter in portion sizes that weren’t needed. He was so excited to do the task that he didn’t take the time to slow sown an pace himself. Had he done so, he’d have seen ways he could have immediately improved what he was about to do–adjusting the temperature, better arranging his cooking station, taking the time to make a good roux (which needs time to become that flavorful yumminess we all love). Such is life. It’s amazing how much more is accomplished when we actually take the time to sit down and go through all that is needed versus just rushing through a given task.
- Read the instructions. The recipe card that Bug was using for his meal had numbered steps with a graphic that showed him what he was supposed to do during each step. In Bug’s haste to make a great dish, he didn’t read the instructions thoroughly. He instead skimmed the recipe steps and looked at the pictures to direct him. This could have worked for him if he was familiar with the recipe, but this was the first time he ever made this dish and he needed to know the nuances involved, even if it was a “simple” dish. Because he didn’t read thoroughly, he didn’t know that he needed to create double deckers and prep those additional layers. He didn’t know that there was a way of properly spreading the roux. He didn’t know the bread was to be toasted slightly. He didn’t know because he didn’t read the instructions.
This one struck me because I know many people, including myself, who have been guilty of this one. How many times have we taken our Bible and skimmed through a chapter or a verse to find that piece that is applicable to our situation, but leaving it completely out of context. I can’t tell you the number of times that I have seen spouses argue over the the submissiveness of a woman, only to completely miss the difference in Godly submission and earthy subservience. There are references throughout history of dictators, slave masters, and people of ill intent taking bits and pieces of scripture to justify their actions. In our Christian life, you can’t skim the pages of the Word. You have to deep dive into it.
- Do not go ahead of the instructions. There were 12 steps on the recipe card. It appeared the Bug skimmed through and at step 5 decided to rush things. He skipped steps 10 and 11 completely. When he realized in step 8 that something wasn’t adding up completely, he tried to go back and address what he missed in step 7 but experienced difficulty in doing so. I loved this one too. Do you remember when God promised then Abram and Sarai that they would have a child in their old age. After a while of waiting and seeing nothing happen and supposing that she and Abram were just too old, Sarai figured she would go ahead of the instructions received. Saria impatiently went ahead of God’s instruction, gave her handmaiden to Abram who conceived with her and together bore a son, and all sorts of resentment and woe ensued.
- Complete the recipe. At this point in the cooking process, Bug began to feel frustrated. He realized that something was not quite up to par and he didn’t know how to correct it. He didn’t want to ask for assistance because he didn’t want to admit that something was wrong and because he wanted to do it by himself. So, after completing step number 9, Bug stopped. He didn’t want to put the product in the oven to bake. Since I was still in the area at this point, I reminded him that he needed to see things through until the end. Bug put the recipe in the oven and there was a pleasant smell throughout the house as the recipe baked.
It is because Jesus read the instructions and knew the instructions that He was able to recite those instructions to the enemy. It is because He know the Word of God, the instructions left for our life that He was able to overcome. The same is readily available for us.