Embracing Grace: The Real Deal

Day 16

Scripture: Mark 4:23-25; 2 Timothy 2:14-16

Photo Credit: Dvortygirl. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Syrup_grades_large.JPG

One of my childhood remembrances of mom-cooked meals was the waffle brunch. This was a meal Mom rolled out every month or so. It usually consisted of her special crispy waffles topped with butter and syrup, a side of spicy sausage patties, small glasses of milk and petite glasses of orange juice.

[Note to self: if you fall to the temptation of sweet comestibles after writing this devotion, you are missing the point.]

Once in a while and for reasons I don’t remember, it was an evening meal. When it fell at night, my dad would insist on having salad with the waffles. I think this was his way of justifying the sweets. I know that sounds odd, having salad with waffles.

It gets even stranger, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Anyone who is acquainted with Dad knows he is a conversational kind of guy. Putting it simply, he likes to talk. He apparently was having an exceptional conversation about something this particular night, but all we kids remember was watching him top his salad with thousand island dressing then, as he continued chatting, he poured dressing on top of his already buttered and syruped waffle. Our eyes grew as big as saucers then, being the supportive children that we are, we laughed our heads off.

Dad is a hambone, so he milked the situation for all it was worth. Hiding behind the guise of frugality, he insisted on eating his ruined waffle, Thousand Island dressing and all. If our eyes could have gotten any bigger, they would have. The table fell silent. When it was obvious he was going to go through with this madness, a string of “eew’s” filled the air. He screwed up his face several times but managed to consume the entire waffle.

Let it be noted here that this was the last time Dad used Thousand Island dressing on anything, ever.

One year for Christmas, an aunt sent us some genuine maple syrup. This was my first taste of anything other than the imitation stuff, and boy, was it good!  I placed a drop of it on my tongue, rolled it around my mouth and allowed the flavor to permeate all taste buds. It carried a subtle sweetness to it, laced with a woody, earthiness that can only be summed up in the word “maple”.

In that moment, I knew that nothing compares to the genuine article.

This is how we should be with the Word of God.

So much competes for our attention today. Our eye gates are on overload. Our ear gates are in constant flux. We have Twitter, Face Book, My Space, Blogger, instant streaming T.V. and movies, cell phones, texting, and the list grows each year. Just take a look around. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to notice we are on sensory overload.

When priorities get skewed and senses overwhelmed, we cannot help but become callous.

I think this is by design. Satan knows we cannot hear God when we don’t stop moving all day.

To remain sensitive to His Word, we need to instantly be aware of that which attempts to imitate the real deal. There are no shortcuts in the kingdom of God. If we want to know Him, we must spend time with Him, away from all life’s clutter, so that we can hear Him.

Law Enforcement studies authentic currency to better detect the counterfeit, not the other way around. It is a proven method. If they know how important it is to study the real deal, how much more important is it for us to be in His Word, so that we may detect the counterfeits the world throws at us?

Read: Mark 4:23-25; 2 Timothy 2:14-16. Journal your private thoughts.

Father, please help me to seek you first each morning, before everything, when the house is silent and I can hear. In my hearing, help me to truly listen to Your heart. Let our hearts beat as one. For Your glory, amen.

Copyright © 2011, Érin Elise

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