Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Kitchen Stove As Pulpit (A Simple Lesson In Grace)

to put off your old self which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires,  and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
Ephesians 4:22-24 (ESV)

'Axiom Apartments Fake Fruit' photo (c) 2009, Mr. T in DC - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

I walked past my fruit bowl looking guiltily at the pears. They sat on the sideboard forgotten and once beautiful. The last time I ate one my system was a little off. I hadn’t been back and they'd quickly moved well past prime. I just didn’t want to throw them away. Purposefully, I walked them into the kitchen.  Truthfully, I walked the bowl into the kitchen. I intended to use it for something else.

Lesson One…we often pray (wish/hope/beg) when we feel we have nothing else. Sometimes we return to worship, return to God as part of a bargain. I don’t think He cares. He is expert at taking broken, misshapen, mistakenly deployed resources and putting them to right use. It’s what He does. He is God. 

Once I washed and redeployed the bowl, I melted butter into a saucepan. 

Lesson Twoprofound change often means taking the heat. I peeled and sliced the pears, or more accurately what was left of them into the sizzle and pop of melting butter. An idea was forming, and more than a recipe, it was a simple lesson in Grace.

sermon preached at my kitchen stove?
"let go and believe." there is nothing we can
do to become something new
and better without God’s Grace.

I mashed the pears, let them cook down, covered the pot and walked away. 

Lesson Threetransformation by Grace takes time, and patience, and often some pain. (it probably hurts to have your form crushed to nothing by a potato masher).  I left the kitchen, trusting the process (Lord, let my faith be like my confidence in the kitchen) and went away to do something else. While I am patient in some things, I am entirely IMPATIENT in awaiting the Will of God. I know He doesn’t care about my impatience. He is God.

Maybe thirty minutes later I return to my kitchen. There is a caramel-ly golden, thickening, sticky mixture in my pot to which I add a little sugar, a little ginger (and then a little more), ground cardamom, and a wooden spoon for tasting. I am creating ginger pear butter from what would have been garbage,  or at the very least compost, and then there is the lesson in Grace.

We are, each of us, passed over fruit. A little bruised, a little wanting, awful sad. God sent me into my dining room this morning for a bowl and a lesson. In writing to the church at Ephesus,  Paul encouraged the faithful to leave their old selves behind. Who we were, who we’ve become, is not good enough for very long (like my pears). They (we) need Grace to be put to right use. They (we) have to suffer profound change, which probably means taking the heat. They (we) need time, patience, and faith.

What was the sermon preached at my kitchen stove? Sometimes you’ve got to let go and believe. My pears weren’t any good as pears any longer, and there was nothing they could do to become something new and better on their own. They needed transformation as desperately as we need God’s Grace.

Can’t wait to slather my gingered pear butter on some homemade biscuits…and when I do, I will have yet another reminder of the goodness of the Lord.

About me...

Growing up in the Baptist church a fourth generation preacher's kid, I married an Anglican. I boldly seek God, and thank my Dad for releasing me from denominationalism, instead encouraging me to embrace Theology and chase Truth. While I am a fiercely private person, I enjoy two public forms of worship, liturgical dance and writing. Dance freed me, providing a language for expression beyond words. Dance is my prayer language. Writing is humbling, sometimes terrifying, but always enlightening. Mind is a quirky by reverent perspective on God and Grace. I started blogging to replace a big job that went away. I was a 20 year Human Resources veteran who became a Stay-At-Home-Mom not entirely by choice. Writing started as something to do, but evolved into an ongoing journey to draw nigh to The One. My beloved husband and I have two beautiful children, a gorgeous boxer, and 20 years of wedded bliss. Mine is a joyous relationship with the Creator, even as I learn difficult lessons while hearing His loving laughter on the wind...You can find Chelle at her blog Treat Me To A Feast, FB, and Twitter.

Thank you Chelle for this beautiful reminder of grace and patience.

Linking with Soli deo Gloria, Better Mom, Titus 2sdays, Winsome Wed, #TellHisStory


  1. What a beautiful analogy...thank you for sharing this story about life and faith combined!!

  2. I love how a bowl of past-their-prime pears became a lesson in Grace! Thank you for sharing it with us! It reminds me that God has plans for me that I know nothing about, but I need to let Him change and mold me as He sees a fit.

    Blessings to you both,

    1. Laura,
      Isn't God amazing? That's the lesson I keep learning...that God has plans that are better than ours and far beyond our understanding, and that even when we feel like rotten, wasted, fruit, there is a goodness springing from His Love for us that makes beauty from ashes.
      A blessing upon you and those you love.
      Peace and good,

  3. Don't you love it how God speaks to us through the ordinary? I love what you shared here!

    I am stopping by from MissionalWomen.Com. We were blessed to link up after you at Soli Deo Gloria.

    1. Lyli,
      So glad you stopped by. Missional Women and Soli Deo Gloria are two of my favorite places online. Such rich fellowship there. Yes, I do love God showing up in the ordinary. I am reminded that He is everywhere, always, Omnipresent and Everlasting.
      Peace and good to you.

  4. Such great words, Chelle...thank you for sharing! I love the lessons God can teach us even in the simple, everyday things...these are beautiful. Blessings to you, friend. :)

    1. Mel,
      thanks. On the days when I feel like nothing more than forgotten, rotten fruit, God is there, making beauty of my mess.

  5. Kristin,
    so grateful the story spoke to you. I am continually awed by the way God speaks in the ordinary. It reminds me that each of our lives overflow with Grace.
    thank you for kind words.
    Peace and good to you in Jesus' name.

  6. Great lesson on grace. I love visuals and object lessons - they speak to my abstract self. :) Thanks for sharing - btw, how did the pear sauce turn out? ;)

    1. Rosanne,
      Thanks. Glad the visual appealed to you. Sometimes it is in the act of going through something when I actually GET the lesson.
      It's good, BTW....very tasty.

  7. Replies
    1. Denise,
      Thanks. I humbly receive the blessing.
      Peace and good to you in Jesus' name.

  8. Awesome lesson! Beautifully written...i could see it all happening in my mind. And your cooking posts make me want to fly right up there and invite myself for dinner (and breakfast and lunch).

    1. Christine,
      so glad you got it. You have a seat at my table any time. I'd even cook for you when the kitchen's closed LOL
      Peace, sweet friend.

  9. Simply beautiful! Our pastor just wrapping a sermon series called Overwhelming Grace. This was a wonderful lesson to add to all the great nuggets he gave us on God's grace...is overwhelming grace! So GOOD!
    Blessings to you,

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