Sunday, March 18, 2012

Ham Delights

My dear, sweet friend Margaret makes some of the best ham biscuits/sandwiches/delights in the world.  You know, the kind that you get at wedding/baby showers in the fellowship hall.  With poppy seeds?  And mustard?  And cheese?  And yumminess.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to have one fresh out of the oven... oh my word, it was tasty.

Shortly after that, Ms. M. pulled out a dish containing some amazing looking BBQ Chicken Pizza.  Oh, wow, it smelled GOOOOD.  I immediately told her I wasn't able to have any because I gave up meat for Le...n...t.... WHAT?!?!?!?

Yep.  My Lenten "sacrifice" of meat had rapidly been forgotten as I popped that Totally Delightful Ham Delight in my mouth moments before.




The past nearly 4 weeks have been a journey of "sacrifice"... I had intended to give up sodas (which I have... this only poses a problem around the 3:00pm hour when a Diet Coke sounds AMAZING), but Dan said he was giving up meat and I decided to join him in our mini-vegetarian-quest to add solidarity and functionality to our family.

I had no idea how much meat we ate.

I don't tend to think of myself as a "meat eater" in the sense that a Meat Lovers Pizza makes me gag.  Those shows where they wrap ham and kielbasa and chicken and steak in bacon and eat it?  Gross.  But apparently, I ate meat more than I thought.

We first noticed that the time we prepare meat most is when we entertain.  Not everyone gets excited about veggies only... or if they do, we over-think their response (before even giving them the chance to respond.)  We are not mean enough to offer make kids eat the fake hotdogs- we just had those for us and offered kids the "real" thing.  We grilled portabella mushrooms for us and chicken breasts for our guests. 

Still, not that hard.

Then you add in fast food.... What should I order at Chick-Fil-A?  (I had a side salad and fruit.)  (And left hungry.)  Running through McD's after preschool for convenience suddenly becomes less convenient.

But part of that has been the lovely blessing of Lent.  As I catch myself thinking "what will I order?" or "what will I serve?", I've taken my insignificant moment of sacrifice to think of that of Jesus.  (And you  know I hate a Christian Cliche', right?  But Jesus is the real reason for the season here, folks.)  His death on a cross far outweighs my repeat roast vegetable entree....  His sacrifice for me is far greater than any "silly" thing I can do here.

Then comes the Ham Delights.  For the first time in weeks, it never crossed my mind as I popped one in my mouth.  Only later did I catch my "mistake".

Oh, y'all... isn't that how I live?

I get caught up in my own wants and forget how focused I want to be.  Time after time, I fail.

Tonight, I watched E mimic my own moment of "weakness."  She, too, has given up something for Lent: Hand Sanitizer.  She loooooves the stuff.  (She still uses it at church and school, but has given up her application of it which often is bath-worthy.)  She entered her bathroom, lathered on up, and came out to catch herself with "that look" in her eye and said, "Hey Mom?  I'm like you.  I messed up my Lent stuff, too."

How they see every little thing we do and soak it in as teachable... even when we don't want to teach that moment.

We joked at dinner tonight that E and I made Jesus cry a little today (JOKING, people... we don't teach our child false theology) and then took a second to talk about obedience as worship.  We talked about how Jesus knows our hearts... and even when we enjoy a delightful moment of ham or a quick romp in the hand sanitizer... we can still seek to honor Him with our actions.

E skipped off to bed just now- dressed as Pocahontas- with another moment of reality filed away in her precious little mind.  She brushed her teeth in the same room as THE sanitizer and was able to pass on it.

Today, I passed on several items containing meat at lunch and dinner.

Neither of these sacrifices will get us to heaven, compare to His sacrifice, or even make Him cry when we fail... but our sacrifices lend focus to our constantly wayward lives.  And for that, we are delightfully thankful.

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