Friday, 7 June 2013

Lesson from a burnt dinner {it only takes a moment}

It was the start of a day full of hope and expectations.

I *WAS* going to make a good start.  Keep the kitchen tidy - get on with the laundry.

Make the dinner, whilst making my porridge for breakfast.

It was all going so very well. The pasta sauce was made, and turned down to the lowest setting on the hob.  My porridge was made - complete with cinnamon and blueberries - and I went to sit in the lounge to eat it in comfort.  (Mums are allowed to do such things.....)

The door was shut and, as far as I knew, my beautifully made dinner - all ready for later - was simmering and improving on the heat.

That was, until I went through, with my empty bowl (yum), to the smell of BURNT sauce.

I rushed over to the hob (questioning a certain child as to WHY they couldn't smell it was burning, whilst they did their morning chore in the kitchen??), and stirred it, vainly hoping it would be enough to rescue it.  But, as I stirred, I could feel it was hopelessly stuck to the pan, and the acrid smell of burnt food overpowered any delicious scents that had previously pervaded the room.

I tipped it into another pan - trying everything I could to rescue my "burnt offering".  It was when I did this that I realised it was beyond rescue.  The bottom of the pan was charred and blackened.  Truly burnt, not just caught a little.

I went out for the day, and bought a substitute for dinner.  When I got home, I tasted what was in the rescue saucepan, but that only confirmed my suspicions.  It was foul, and I spat it out straight away, before I could vomit!  (Burnt food is a pet hate of mine - burnt = inedible).

What promise that morning had held.  All my good intentions - all my hopes of an easy dinner time, because I had planned ahead - dashed by a momentary lapse of concentration.  I had left it on the halogen ring, and had I only had it on the right ring it wouldn't have burnt.  Carelessness on my part.  Not taking notice.  Good dashed by a momentary lapse of concentration.

As I scrubbed the saucepan later - and, it was no mean feat to get that things CLEAN - the Lord impressed a lesson upon my heart.

It only takes a moment, just like my pasta sauce, to bring ruin to something good.  Particularly, the damage that is caused by the tongue.

You see, the Bible speaks much about the words that we say.  You can so quickly ruin all that is good by a word that is spoken hastily, or without thought.  It only takes a moment to open your mouth, and something negative to come out, destroying the the good you have previously tried to do by using your words wisely.

"He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life: but he that openeth wide his lips shall have destruction."
Proverbs 13:3

"Keep thy tongue from evil..."
Psalm 34:13

"Wise men lay up knowledge: but the mouth of the foolish is near destruction."
Proverbs 10:14

"A fool's mouth is his destruction..."
Proverbs 18:7

 "Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. "
Ephesians 4:29

"Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones."
Proverbs 16:24 

So many verses referring to what we say and HOW we say it.  

It's incredibly easy, sadly, to open your mouth and say the wrong things, or the right things the WRONG way.   

As a wife, we can be unwise in what we say to our husband.  We can show a lack of submission by "having the last word", or by questioning the final say of our husband.  We can show a lack of grace by not using a pleasant and kind tone in our voice when responding to him. 

As a mother, its shamefully easy to "spoil" things with our children.  When you are placed on the "heat", it's so much easier to get "burnt".  The "heat" of children testing your patience - of being asked the same thing over and over, or a child questioning your decisions, or a child whining and moaning. The "heat" of a child being defiant or disobedient.  The "heat" of a child doing the same thing wrong again, even though your own lack of consistency has produced such an action.

As a friend, or family member, we can choose our words unwisely.  Familiarity breeds contempt, may ring true.  Just because we have known someone for a long time, does not give us the excuse to be less cordial, patient and kind to those who we should hold dearest.

As a complete stranger, we can let our Christian testimony be spoilt by a word spoken too hastily.  Being rude to someone else - being short when dealing with a problem in a store - not being gracious when speaking to another foreigner, who you can't understand, on the phone.  All these opportunities to show the love of Christ, shattered by a word that is NOT fitly spoken.

It only takes a moment, to spoil all that is good.  Like the saucepan, it can take an awful lot of effort to undo the ruin.  

1 comment :

  1. Oh, what good words! (A beautiful use of your tongue/er, um..pen!)
    A good reminder for a busy day at my house...I am less considerate on days just such as today will be - so a very timely post!

    Now, I am anxiously awaiting the continuation of your courtship story!...please don't leave us hanging too long! :) (I'm hoping the delay is not related to a broken arm or shingles!)