Monday, July 4, 2011

I'm Not Good at Making Pie Crust

There are weekends for chores and weekends for fun. This happened to be a weekend that combined both.

There were basement closet doors to fix and a new color to paint under the dining room chair rail. And there was the cook out on Friday night, the wedding on Saturday and, of course, the 4th of July to consider.

It almost seemed like too much work and too much fun to manage in one long weekend. But, being the maniacs that we are, we made it a point to make it all happen. An happen it did -- with only a few minor glitches. For instance, after we left for the wedding, I realized that my camera wasn't in its case. So, the beautiful images of my friend's daughter being married will have to live in my memory.

So other than a few minor issues, it was frankly a pretty amazing weekend. And feeling pretty successful, I posted my status updates on FaceBook, sometimes with pictures (not of the wedding, of course). There were encouraging comments and some inviting me to come and cook and do some home repairs.

But, one comment caught my attention. A dear friend asked: "Is there anything you can't do?"

I thought about it for a while, and came up with this response: "I'm not really good at making pie crust."

I guess I could be though, if I tried. I love to try new things -- and I am especially aware of the gifts God has given me. He has allowed me to be good at many things as a result of His grace. My dad used to think of that ability to do lots of things as a Jack of all trades and a master of none. Of course, he meant that someone would do a million things and be successful at none. I have some modicum of success with much of what I endeavor to do. So I guess I don't fit dad's profile -- thankfully.

It's a marvelous thing to explore and experience God's creation by trying new things -- as long as it doesn't compromise sanctity, life and livelihood. And so as not to alienate your friends and neighbors, pride also needs to be kept in check (sometimes hard to do on FB). Like a good Father, God provides the wisdom necessary to manage these concerns.

In Romans, one of my favorite books in the Bible, Paul is very pragmatic about how we need to treat one another as children of God. I guess this was the best approach to get through to those noble and pagan Romans; it certainly works for me. This verse seems to sum up the flurry of a weekend that we enjoyed, and supply an answer the question I was asked (it also happened to be a reading at the wedding we attended).
Love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honor. Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the holy ones, exercise hospitality. Bless those who persecute (you), bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Have the same regard for one another; do not be haughty but associate with the lowly; do not be wise in your own estimation. Do not repay anyone evil for evil; be concerned for what is noble in the sight of all. If possible, on your part, live at peace with all. (Rom 12:10-18)

It's a blessing to have friends that can support you and appreciate the many things you can do. And I certainly hope no one thought I was gloating. I just find great joy in the gifts with which God has blessed me. I'm also grateful for the many wondrous gifts He has bestowed on all my friends and neighbors. When you share your talents with me, I rejoice and give glory to God who is present in all of you.

Life is short and time is fleeting. We need to use our gifts and talents wisely for the greater glory of God. It is special to me to share my gifts with others.

Now, I intend to learn how to make a superior pie crust! I'm sure I'll post pictures when and if I do.


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