Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Sweet Pickles

I made sweet pickles this weekend.

Mind you, I didn't intend to. I don't even like sweet pickles! Give me a crunchy dill (preferably very sour) and I'll chomp down!

But somehow, the recipe I was following for my first-ever attempt at pickling about 8 lb of cucumbers from our garden never got around to telling me when to put in the dill. I looked at another recipe and thought I had it figured out, but decided to taste test beforehand just to see if it seemed right.... and I discovered that I'd spent 2 days making sweet pickles!

I was SO disappointed ... yet as usual, there was a lesson in it for me.

The process of making pickles involves hours and hours of soaking - "baptizing" if you will :) . And the pickles were completely without a say in the end result. As the pickle-maker, it was up to me to know the recipe and determine whether to make sweet or dill pickles.

I messed up, but thankfully God does not! As He baptizes us with His Spirit, and "soaks" us in the Word of God, times of prayer and worship, fellowship of the saints, and the crucible of suffering ... He always knows what is going to come out on the other side. He knows His own, Scripture tells us, and He knows how to protect us and cause us to stand blameless in His presence with great joy on the day of judgment (Jude 24). Phil. 1:6 says, "He who began a good work in you will see it through to the day of completion." In other words, He'll finish what He started -- and it will be good.

Even if it doesn't look like what we anticipated.

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