Cooking is a favorite pastime for many people. For some, it’s the thrill of creation – taking ingredients and combining them in such a way to discover an unrealized masterpiece. For others, cooking is a means of expression – a way to take care of those that we love. For me, it’s a mixture of both, plus a dash of being able to offer hospitality. Food is a unifier – it creates common experiences among us.
Along with the benefits enunciated above, there’s also lessons that can be learned from spending some time in the kitchen. Some of these lessons are rather mundane in nature such as what ingredients taste well together, and what spoon is best for stirring sticky dough. However, other lessons go beyond the confines of the kitchen and filter into life.
I was reminded of this recently when, while I was cooking, I knocked a tomato out of the pan and onto the stove top below. Without thoroughly pondering my actions, I reached for the outcast tomato. The problem with this was that the stove was still on. I convinced myself, however, that my fingers were small enough to reach the tomato without getting burned. As you might imagine, I was wrong.
You can also probably see the analogy to life. So many times I find myself reaching for something that I want, even though I know that in all wisdom I should probably pass it by. I convince myself that I can negotiate around the hurdles and still get my coveted prize. Whether its a tangible reward or the reputation I long for, I try to create shortcuts to getting that which I think is rightly mine. And so often I wind up getting burned.
What I have to learn is that if God desires for me to have something He will provide it. No amount of compromise is required on my part to get something which He wishes to bestow. And if it’s not something that comes from His hand, why should I want to grasp it anyway?