Friday, October 14, 2011

Be the Bread

Motivation is such a b-e-a-utiful thing. 

I know that being gung-ho can come in different stages/proportions. I've been through enough finals weeks that I definitely understand the motivation/procrastination cycle. But it kind of makes me laugh when God sends motivation in VERY unexpected ways... and it ends up being for his glory. 

All semester during my "Contemporary Evangelism" class, we have been drilled on what it means to be servant leaders and share the gospel by both our words and actions. At 10:03am yesterday, I submitted my final paper for this finals week (WHEW!) My little brain assumed that I was done being "productive" for the next 10 or so days til my next semester begins. But for those of you who know me (and know our God), that wasn't the most accurate conclusion. 

Almost past the point of no return... 
I wrapped up my paper, took the dog for a walk and was preparing to head into work for a few hours. As I was getting ready to leave, I was doing some quick "power cleaning" of the kitchen and noticed some overly-ripe bananas sitting on the counter. My husband and I try not to be wasteful, but he is the banana eater in the house-- seriously, if he is in a banana phase, he will polish off a large bunch of bananas in a couple of days. Me, on the other hand-- I might eat one or two out of the bunch. Unfortunately, he wasn't in a "phase" and these bananas were past the point of "enjoyable eating." 

As I reached over to grab the bunch of bananas to toss them in the trash, I paused. "Wait a minute... If bananas got too ripe back home, Mama would make banana bread." Oh boy. The seed of motivation had been planted. I wondered if I had a recipe for banana bread. I grabbed my Lacey Family Cookbook that mom gave me at college graduation and banana bread was the first recipe in the book. Funny how I never noticed that til then. Coincidence? I think not. 

Ok, ok... so I had the extra-ripe bananas and recipe. Did I have all the other ingredients? I scanned the list and yep, had everything already except for lemon juice. I was going to the store after work anyways, so that was easy enough. Did I have appropriate bread loaf pans? Not really, but I did have muffin tins... 

Justus LOVES when I cook... because I am messy and waits
expectantly for me to drop something awesome.
Although I think he wants me to stop cooking breads
and strawberry pretzel dessert and make something that
involves lots of red meat. 
And as my motivation grew, I decided I could make a couple of batches of this banana bread and send it to work with Brandon to feed the men of Foxtrot company (I really don't need two batches of banana muffins at my house... because I would eat them... all... and let's be honest, that can be a wee bit counterproductive.) So individual muffins would be perfect. Oh, and did I mention that as I made the muffins, the seven over-ripe bananas added up the exact two cups of mashed bananas needed. Again, coincidence? Negative. 

God planted all these seeds of motivation and laid this out-- and did it with a purpose to show the love and share the life with the Drill Sergeants of Foxtrot company. After the muffins were baked last night, I wanted to stick a note with at least one smiley face on the muffins  (don't judge me) for the Foxtrot team to enjoy today. Suddenly, the scripture about Jesus being the bread of life came to mind. 

I argued with myself for about 20 minutes deciding if I would have the courage to put Scripture on the bag of 24 muffins (ok, 22 at that point-- Brandon and I had already eaten one each). Then I thought-- I am doing this in the name of God for HIS glory, not to win friends or be a well-liked FRG leader. It's for HIM.  So I did it. I placed the following Scripture on the muffins. 

"Then Jesus declared, 'I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.'" --John 6:35

God allowed me an opportunity to show the love and share the life through 22 banana muffins. Small acts of kindness can not only feed the stomach but also the heart and soul. 

Om nom nom... Here's to being the bread!
Take a moment and consider: are you "being the bread" per Jesus' example in your life? Open a door, make cookies for a neighbor, watch a friends kids as a favor to them... the possibilities are endless! As I thought about my own opportunity to "Be the Bread" in the name of Jesus, I considered making this a "Foxtrot Friday..." Maybe I will do this one Friday a month? Who knows... with God, all things are possible. 

Shaking and Baking (Banana Bread), 

"Jesus said to them, 'I tell you the truth, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.'" --John 6:32-33

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