Oh, Taste And See

Oh, Taste And See

Have you ever woken up with an intense desire to satisfy a craving? I’m talking about a yearning so strong it makes your mouth water. Well, that’s exactly what happened to me this morning. I woke up with a craving for some breakfast from Cracker Barrel.

There was just one dilemma to my hunger. The nearest Cracker Barrel is 30-40 miles from my home. However, this fact did not deter or discourage me. I wasn’t just hungry, I was “Hangry”. Nevertheless I was so determined to satisfy my fix that I willingly ignored and endured my hunger pains to complete the journey . You should have seen the look on my face when I finally arrived at the restaurant. I mean, I was ready! After all it only took me 4 hours, two states and three stops. (Definition of Hangry – The combination of hungry and angry together.)

Once seated I sat with great anticipation for my waiter to appear. Finally, the moment I had so desperately salivated for had come to fruition. It was time to place my order. I ordered everything I desired from the menu. All I could think about was the taste of those delicious pancakes with that special one-of-a-kind Cracker Barrel syrup complimented by loaded hash browns with green peppers and onions. Then of course the order wouldn’t be complete without a side of scrambled cheese eggs and two country sausage patties. For a moment the fat kid in me was in food heaven. It didn’t take me long to finish my meal. After all, when the food is good, you don’t waste any time. I kindly returned my plate back to my waiter without the trace of a crumb. Having satisfied my craving, I felt like I could conquer the world.

The irony of this story is that at a minimum I passed at least 100 restaurants. Not only that, I had just enough gas to make it to the restaurant. Oh, there’s one more thing! The kitchen made a mistake. “What had happened was,” when my waiter brought out my order we realized that they had mistakenly added green peppers to my eggs. This blunder wasn’t a show stopper and I sure wasn’t about to let it change my day. So, I politely sent the eggs back and then began to enjoy the rest of my meal. Within a few minutes my eggs were delivered, made to order, fresh and hot.

Questions to Ponder:

Have you ever wanted something so bad that you would travel any distance or crawl through broken glass to get it? So, is it a state of mind, or a physical desire that drives you to relentless action ? Or in some cases, is it a spiritual need deep within that propels your wings? Only you can determine the answer. However, in this scenario there are several additional questions that I’d like for you to ponder.

I woke up with Cracker Barrel on my mind. A craving I could only remember fondly because I had a previous enjoyable experience.  When was the last time you woke up with Jesus on your mind? Have you taken the time to enjoy and develop a “taste” for your experience with Him?

Although I was willing to deny my hunger, I wasn’t willing to give it up. I delayed my hunger, but I didn’t deny my flesh. Are you so consumed to feed the hunger pain of your flesh, that you won’t deny it? Are you at a place in your life where your urges to pursue God are greater than your desire to please your flesh? Yeah, it’s true I need to eat, but the craving to eat shouldn’t be stronger than my desire to pursue God. After all, it is Him who supplies all of my needs.

The distance from my home to the restaurant was not a distraction, nor a barrier. I drove 30-40 miles just to get to there. How many churches do you pass up on Sunday just to get to your favorite mimosa, or brunch location? When was the last time you drove 30-40 miles just to get to Church and experience Jesus? Sometimes we use the convenience of television, Facebook live or YouTube as a substitute for the real experience. In other words, we act lazy and supplement the experience for something artificial. Don’t turn bedside baptist into a curse when you are able and capable of having the real thing.

It only took a few minutes after I was seated for my waiter to appear. When prompted, I gave him my complete order. Comparatively, I don’t need to be prompted to give my cares to the Lord. I know He may not show up when I want Him, but I know He’s always on time. I also know that just because I don’t see Him doesn’t mean He’s not there. Conversely, I don’t have to see the wind to experience its effects. Here’s the Jeopardy question of the day: Are you willing to wait on God even when He doesn’t show up like you want Him to? Or, are you treating Him like your waiter, instead of acknowledging Him as your CREATOR? In other words, you expect to receive service from Him, but you won’t invoke His presence to experience Him.

I passed over 100 restaurants in order to get to the ONE because I knew what I needed could only be filled there. I’ve trained my taste buds to know the difference. Have you spiritually trained yourself to know the difference in the God that you serve? Is he able to satisfy your every need? Does he have a history of serving up miracles by calling dead people out the grave by name? Is His name JESUS?

I almost ran out of gas, but I didn’t give up. Even though the gas light came on, I didn’t believe what I saw. I believed what I heard. It was that quiet voice that whispered, “you can make it.” Do you have enough HOPE in Christ not to give up? Are you willing to press your way through in spite of what you see? Do you know how to recognize the voice of God?

Although my order came out complete it wasn’t right. They made a mistake. Do you condemn those that make honest mistakes? Do you put more faith in the cooks cooking your food than you do in Christ? How’s your attitude when others disappoint you? Better yet, how’s your attitude when God doesn’t bring you exactly what you ordered? You prayed for a spouse and it appears that God didn’t get your order right. They showed up in a different package. You asked for a house and ended up homeless? You prayed for increase on your job and yet you’re living paycheck-to-paycheck. My friends, God doesn’t make mistakes. He makes PROMISES.

In closing:

I remember growing up, as as kid, my mother would force me to eat liver. I HATE liver, but my mother would swear that it was good for me. As I got older I learned that I still don’t like the taste of liver, but I love my mother. As we mature in our spiritual development we must learn that God only wants what’s best for us. The difference between mom and God is that He won’t force anything on you. If you’re ever going to experience God for yourself, you’ll have to be willing to taste His ways. I assure you that you may not like His process, but you’ll LOVE His results. Oh, taste Him and see!