Hey mom, how are you? I said when she picked up her house phone for my call. “I am doing great, just finish talking to your Aunt Carol. Her and your Aunt Pearl will be coming to Atlanta for Thanksgiving and we are going to be cooking some good food”, she responded. Aww, sounds awesome and all I could think about is the crisp cold morning dew covering the windows because the heat of the soul food cooking in the kitchen by my mom and aunties. My mouth watered.
After that call with my mom, I started to reminisce about last year around this time, Adam had come home from traveling for work and he always brings me a gift; this time he brought me the Joanna Gaines “Magnolia Cookbook”. And there it was on page 18 the Buttermilk Biscuits recipe and my ambition colliding.
The excitement of having the new Magnolia Cookbook and my ambition woke me up early on a Fall Saturday morning wanting to achieve my biggest baking challenge–making homemade biscuits. Hey, look, my momma and aunties are good ole country gals from Rocky Mount, Virginia, where all the great cooks are born. I said to myself: “Momma, Aunties and Magnolia, I got this. Let the baking begin.” I read the instructions and then I measured and mixed the ingredients I had; but I needed buttermilk (the main ingredient thus the name of the biscuits). But bound by my laziness and it doesn’t take all of that, I was not going to the nearby Walmart for buttermilk; regular milk will do. I’m being a good steward with what I have in the fridge and cupboard. I giggled to myself not very convincing though. It can’t be that bad; milk is milk (right?) with my eyebrow raised.
Now, Adam, my husband, told me childhood stories of his momma making homemade biscuits all the time, walked into the kitchen. He asked, “whatcha doing” and I said with a sense of Rock Mount and Magnolia baking confidence, “making homemade buttermilk biscuits”, I answered. His face lit up as he said, “it took you 15 years to cook me some homemade biscuits, I’m excited.” I laughed and kept on with my ambitious desires. I continued to stir together all ingredients and began to knead the dough, neatly placing the unusual loose dough on the baking sheet. They’ll be delicious, as I shoved them in the preheated oven, I giggled. The biscuit aroma began to fill the kitchen and Adam’s nose. Beep, times up they’re done! But for some reason they looked like cookies, as Adam voice sounded pass my ear, they do don’t they. But he quickly grabbed the knife and the grape jelly and buttered the biscuit cookies like they were his momma’s, probably to stay married and I just stirred wonder why they looked like flat cookies, crispy on the edges and soft in the middle.
Dang Lord, “What happen?”. First, He said they are Vitamin D biscuit not Buttermilk. See God ain’t going to lie to us or make us feel ok about not follow instructions. Then, He said cookbooks are designed for you to follow when you need help and don’t know how to cook something. Its great you have ambition “Woohoo” but there is work behind ambition. You should have followed the details of the recipe and cooking instructions to make the best buttermilk biscuit. I paused and ponder.
And in that same clear, loving, and chastening voice God said, Stop doing that, cutting corner being lazy, did you really think you were going to get buttermilk biscuit by using Vitamin D milk. This is what you do in our relationship. You want the “fluffy buttermilk biscuit results-the characteristics of the Fruit of the Spirit” Galatians 5:16-22, but you don’t want to read, mediate, study or be obedient to the recipes of the Bible. Get it, Faith without works is dead, James 2:14-26 is talking to Christians, to you because you have all the tools to live righteous in Jesus. You know the path to walk, the talk to talk, but you are not obedient to the Bible’s instructions as it relates to small actions (going to Walmart for the main ingredient, getting out of your comfort zone) and behaviors (laziness slothfulness) in your life. Katina, it’s easy to obey the big things that clearly jump off the pages of the Bible and what you hear every Sunday, but you are forgetting about those things hidden deep in your heart (pride, I’ll do it my way) that you are causing you to be disobedient. Being obedient is an essential part of your faith in Me.
Faith and works, works and faith, fit together hand in glove.
You can’t cut the corners of faith from works. You must be faithful and obedient to (the recipes/instructions) the work I have called you to. Don’t settle for vitamin D biscuit cookie cutting corner life. Your brother Abraham made right with God by works” when he placed his son Isaac on the sacrificial altar and your sister Rahab-actions in hiding God’s spies and helping them escape—that seamless unity of believing and doing, two examples of the evidence of faith and being faithful with their works.
Be an obedient Christian Katina, read the recipes of life I’ve placed in the bible for you, follow the detail instructions because you’ve professed your love for Me, it is essential to your faith. You love Me keep My commandments, John 14:15. …With all your heart, soul and mind and love people-neighbor as yourself Matthew 22:36-40.
And as His voice softly went away, I agree with Him and asked Him to take an inventory of my heart. Psalm 139:23-24, Lord search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts and see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
I must make some changes, but most of all I have to REPENT and ask for FORGIVENESS.
It takes every small measure of obedience to continue to strengthen my intimacy with God. When I’m reading and obeying the Bible, the recipes of life. I can expect the best results. I will be ambitious about being who God says I am in the Bible. I will seek Him, use His recipes daily and honesty take inventory of the small matters of my heart. I have victory over the battle of wanting to cut corners. I will enjoy His instructions and the fullness of life. Ephesians 4:13.
Jesus did not cut corners. He was “obedient unto death, even to the death of the cross” Philippians 2:8, for you and me.
Repent & be forgiven for the small measures of disobedience and be made new in Christ Jesus today.