abide, don’t strive.
lips puckering, eyes watering, and full-on involuntary body shaking, happened as my daughter chugged down some sweet tea that she proudly made on her own.
“what’s wrong???” i asked.
“was this salt water like in the ocean?” she questioned.
you see, my children often confuse sugar and salt. sure, they may look very similar, but you put a heaping cup of salt in your next gallon of tea and tell me what ya think!
so often as a woman, a wife, a mom, a teacher; i look to others to see what they are doing. what is their recipe for success? i am over here trying to make sweet tea with salt instead of sugar! I grimace at each swig! what looked like salt, was actually sugar they were using. doh!
each of us are made in God’s image, with certain strengths to bring to the table. if you have salt, for pete’s sake, brine a chicken! As the sun climbs over the horizon another day, embrace the ingredients you have today. don’t let comparison ruin your teatime. let God be the glue that holds the recipe together and makes your recipe like your neighbor’s recipe.
our beloved, paul, says: “but they are only comparing themselves with each other, using themselves as the standard of measurement. how ignorant!”
2 corinthians 10:12b
how do I do it, though? how do I stop this one that comes like a thief in the night? how do I halt the one that comes to steal my joy? how do I abolish the one that whispers in my ear- ruining relationships? a small voice inside of me says, “abide, don’t strive.” but, really? the world says i need to “strive” to do my best. can it be true? can i stop striving? can i stop striving to be like ‘that’ mom? like ‘that’ wife? like ‘that’ teacher? Jesus says, “YES!”
“remain in me,” Jesus says, “and I will remain in you. a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.”
abide, don’t strive! we aren’t going to produce anything fruitful unless we are abiding in the Lord. i like to think of it as a perpetual state of worship. when we abide in the Lord, we will use the ingredients that He has given us in the unique recipe He has given us. we will stop striving to make sweet tea with salt! we’ll come together where God is. gathering ‘round the table, we will each bring our signature dishes. each special in its own way, complimenting one another for the meal. abide, don’t strive! let’s have dinner! i’ll bring the chicken and you bring the sweet tea!
i would love to pray for you, leave me a comment below if you are in need of prayer!