Friday, June 6, 2014

A Lesson from Fish Tacos

"distracted with much serving"
Luke 10:40

We had fish tacos tonight.  A few weeks ago I bought some cod from Trader Joe's, that was already in chunks, as opposed to filets.  I thought that would be ideal for fish tacos, since I always end up cutting filets into smaller pieces anyway.  Plus, I had bought some mango and pineapple salsa the last time I was there, and that goes better on fish than it does on tortilla chips. 

I made some fresh pico de gallo, too, in case anyone was too timid to try the mango/pineapple jazz on their taco.  {Like my mango and pineapple-loving daughter.  Silly girl.}

And then I just needed to shred a little cheese, and chop some lettuce.  Heat up the refried beans and the flour tortillas, and bob's your uncle ~ there's dinner.  {Or maybe Roberto's your tio, in this case.}

I felt the need for a simplified dinner tonight.  It was sort of a tiring day.  And not for any particular reason, really.  It was just hard to get myself motivated. 

While I was making dinner, the boys were at baseball practice, and my girl was working on her homework, and then watching a little TV.  She asked me several times if I needed help with dinner ~ she's good that way ~ but I told her I had everything under control.  And I was glad it was that kind of dinner preparation, as opposed to one of those more frenzied ones where I needed all hands on deck. 

I had one of those nights a few weeks ago.  My hubby was nearby, but working.  My daughter was doing homework, and my son was helping me.  But then he dropped an egg on the floor, and at the same time, I went to throw something in the trash, and discovered we had ants.  At that point, I announced that I needed everyone to report to the kitchen.  I had something on the stove that needed stirring, trash that needed to be taken out, and the can cleaned of ants, and the cupboard sprayed, and an egg that needed to be cleaned up off the floor.  {Did you know that table salt is the trick for that?  Makes it more of a solid mess than a semi-liquid one.}

And right at that moment, when I should have been saying, "Calgon, take me away!", what I was thinking was: "I wonder what was going on Martha's kitchen when she snapped, and demanded that Jesus send Mary to help her..."

See, we criticize Martha, for being too much about homemaking, and not enough about sitting with Jesus ~ and rightly so, for the reasons Jesus explained.  But we have no idea what caused her to go off, and maybe we judge her too harshly.  Maybe she was in over her head, and hasn't that happened to all of us?  Maybe she should have taken into account the whole picture, when she was planning the evening.  Maybe she wanted to impress her guests with a souffle or beef Wellington, and baked Alaska for dessert. 

But she should have realized that the best part about the evening was going to be her sweet Lord in her home.  Maybe she planned a complicated meal when she should have planned to have a pizza delivered.  Or, you know, hummus...

I think we set ourselves up for failure sometimes.  We overestimate our abilities, or have our priorities wrong, or think we can handle more than we can.  Doesn't mean that sometimes we won't be in over our heads through no fault of our own, but there are times we should be able to avoid it.  That's what it means to "count the cost," as Jesus said in Luke 14.  To go in, eyes wide open, knowing what's going to be expected of us.

Tonight I was thinking about the choice I made, to prepare fish tacos for dinner.  But Jesus wants us to look deeper.  He wants us to approach our spiritual life with this awareness, and then fortify ourselves for what's ahead.

~ "whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me
      cannot be My disciple." ~
Luke 14:27

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