Monday, December 10, 2012

Phone Rings, Part I

8 p.m. Saturday evening. Phone rings.

"Jenn, can you have a family of four to your house for lunch tomorrow?"

I open the freezer door to see what I have on hand. I'm stalling for time. I already know what my answer will be.

"Sure. No problem. Happy to do it."

I say those words in faith. Because honestly, I do not feel one bit happy about it. I know what having unexpected guests for lunch means. It means a trip to the only store that is opened on Sunday morning. It means that my already strained grocery budget is about to go bust. It means that the time I had hoped to spend reading a good book would be spent tidying the house and preparing a three course meal. It means making conversation (in French!) with perfect strangers when I'd rather not be conversing at all.

"Sure. No problem. Happy to do it."

 My response reflects what I wish my heart was feeling. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.

And so I wake up early Sunday morning, wondering what to make. I rehearse recipes in my head while reminding myself that I really DO like to cook. I grab a shopping bag and head to the market. Fall veggies, frozen salmon, a local white wine and strawberry sorbet all find their way into my cart. I realize I am enjoying myself.


Back at home, the table is set, butternut squash soup (my chosen appetizer) simmers on the stove, and I find that I have a 20 minute window of peace and quiet before I need to prepare the salmon. I pick up the book, Digging Ditches, by Helen Roseveare and read:
Matthew 11: 28-30, 'Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest, take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls. for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.' The yoke - that heavy, unwieldy wooden bar that holds two oxen together when ploughing, looks like an instrument of torture rather than something that is light and brings rest, until we remember that unresisting compliance to the pressure of the yoke makes possible a sharing of the load that more than halves the weight involved. The ox suffers no pressure sore on its neck if it keeps in step with its partner, and does not seek to turn to right or left. In other words, the yoke causes no pain when the ox works with it in quiet submission. So as we agree to be yoked to Christ--what an indescribable privilege!--submitting to Him in unquestioning obedience, He takes far more than half the load and guides us to plough a straight furrow.
The timer rings, calling me back to the kitchen. I go happily. I am no longer resisting the pressure of the yoke. I thank God for sharing the burden--and for turning the work to which He has called me into joyful service. I submit in unquestioning obedience.

I am blessed. 

1 comment:

  1. Jenn,
    I am curious about your salmon recipie. I have never seen salmon and, what I think is bacon, wrapped in a pastry type shell. Could you post the salmon recipie? Or maybe email it to me. I love reading your blog by the way. My email is

    Jenn Kramer