Slow Cooker vs. Ingredients. And the winner is . .

Ingredients.

I forgot about the ingredients.

Lest you jump to judgments on me, to be fair, I have a stupendous slow cooker.  I mean, it cooks amazing food.  Corn chowder, potato soup, Velveeta cheese dip, BBQ chicken sandwiches . . extraordinary meals.  But . . these came from cookbooks.  Gooseberry Patch cookbooks, to be exact.

Somehow, someway, I thought I could use leftover ingredients and achieve an okay result.

Hamburger, kidney beans, canned carrots–I am not making this up–and tomato bisque soup.  This is really a time I can say don’t try this at home.

I came home to taste not a delicious commercial-worthy meal, but a–to be frank–distasteful, off-color hodgepodge.  What would I do?  Make a skillet of stir fry to serve with it, (naturally?).  Somehow, someway, this would make the greasy, slightly-gross meal better.

If I hadn’t oversalted the stir fry, it would at least have made the meal better–>eat that part of the meal.  Poor Ben sat down with me and ate salty stir-fry with weird ‘Hamburger Hurter’ in it.

The lesson?

Ingredients.

I forgot about the ingredients.

They matter.  The so-called mighty slow cooker is just a vessel.  It can’t make fabulous meals.  Without the recipe, guessing and tossing together random ingredients . . just doesn’t work.  Even if there was an obscure chance it did, would you risk supper on it?  Probably not.

What about eternal life?  Would you risk your opportunity for eternal life on the chance that you can create a hodgepodge of good works to get you there?

That your brilliance or cleverness or wittiness or abilities, tossed together, will be enough to get you to Heaven’s shore?

All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. (Isaiah 62:6, NIV)

Why?  Why would you do it?  Why would you risk it all on the cooking vessel instead of the recipe?  No matter how smart you are, how strong, how creative, or how benevolent . . you are the vessel, not the recipe.

Our lives really are like slow cookers, and what is produced by them isn’t revealed until the final act: The timer dings and we are in the Presence of a Perfect, Good, and Holy God to show Him what we’ve done with ourselves.

The recipe for success?  The five-star taste to life that you’ve been craving and never able to master by whim or genius, will or self-‘good’ness?

God’s Word–and there is no substitute for this one.  You either follow Him . . or you don’t.  But don’t worry: there is plenty of room for the creativity of your personality to come through in the melody of perfection He desires for your life.  And He’ll show you just how to add that ‘irrepeatable’-in-anyone-else, magnifico blend of spices He has just for you:

If you will trust in Him.

. . If you don’t, you will end up with something far worse than a yucky dinner.  You’ll end up with a yucky life, and a yucky outlook on eternity.

Trust in God’s recipe.  Trust in the grace of Jesus Christ to be the Masterpiece in your life–not your own works.

Otherwise, you’re stirring together catastrophe.

Now, today, start stirring together the eternal “taste of joy” that highlights the work of Jesus Christ in you.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart

and lean not on your own understanding;

in all your ways submit to him,

and he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

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