God’s Grace is for Klutzes, Too!

The other night, I was preparing THE healthy gourmet dinner of the century (in my humble, working wife/homework checking mom opinion) featuring steamed cabbage.  But catastrophe emerged after I reached for my fresh pepper grinder.  Following four vigorous twists of my new container, the top came off and peppercorns were flung everywhere (because I’ve been working out and building muscles, right?).  Mind you, I’ve intentionally TRIED – on multiple occasions – to remove the top from previous containers to get those last few precious peppercorns out, and have NEVER succeeded.  I stared in horror as the scene unfolded in 2 seconds like a bad slow-motion sci-fi flick…tiny black peppercorns rolled all over my floor…and landed like projectiles in my once lovely pot of cabbage.  Less than an eighth of the peppercorns remained in the container.  Awkward!

Needless to say, I stopped grinding and stared at the mess scattered around my feet – and dispersed throughout the pot.  Feebly attempting to maintain an optimistic outlook, I mused while trotting to grab the broom and dustpan, “Well, I guess I won’t need to add any of hubby’s fresh garden red peppers for flavor!”  But my chef’s balloon was utterly deflated.  Though multiple tastes from my children confirmed, “This is good, Mommy!” I was unconvinced.  And I knew it wouldn’t pass the hubby taste test.  A veggie-less dinner emergency was quickly averted by substituting a previously-made tossed salad.

I was still kinda moping around after putting dinner on the table, incredulous about the turn of events, my ruined pot of cabbage, and the lateness of the hour preventing me from starting afresh and anew with the other head of cabbage mocking me from the fridge.  I told my 7 year-old daughter, “I can’t believe I spilled all that pepper into the pot!”  And she peered at me with those beautiful brown eyes and said, “That’s in the PAST, Mom.  Let it go!”  And she was exactly right.  That really blessed my heart to hear her remind me of the truth.  No need in crying over spilled pepper, eh?

But do you think this type of thing was a once-in-a-lifetime freak occurrence?  Well, I can’t say whether my pepper predicament felt less klutzy than my recent praise scrape-up – read on…

While rendering a solo this past Sunday, I got the brilliant idea to punctuate my lyrics for “I’ve been set free” by crossing my wrists then pulling them apart to the beat of the music.  If it sounds awkward to read about it, just imagine me trying to execute it…and falling miserably short.   Bottom line: while pulling my hands apart, somehow the hand holding the microphone jerked and hit my lip, which subsequently hit my front tooth, and I felt (and tasted) blood.  While continuing to sing, I felt my top lip begin to swell.  Thank goodness half the song was over. Yes, in the twinkling of an eye, I got injured while singing a solo (so I can’t blame anyone else) – how clumsy is that?  Humbling! 🙂

No one noticed (I checked later; even my hubby couldn’t tell – and he was sitting 4 feet away from me), but if I hadn’t needed to finish the song before my Pastor began to preach the unadulterated Word of God, I probably would’ve collapsed into a riotous cacophony of giggles at my own ineptitude. And you’ve been singing with a microphone since age six…really?  LOL.  Aren’t you glad God’s grace is available to us in every uncomfortable, embarrassing, inelegant, uncoordinated, self-conscious moment we face?  I know I am!  Do you have any cares to cast on Him today?  Do it now…

“But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.”
(James 4:6)

© Copyright 2012 by Kayren J. Cathcart

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Be Holy…Just Do It!

As I prepare to minister in song today at my 94 year-old great-aunt’s funeral (she was the only living sister of my grandma, who was the baby of 11 children), I’m reflecting on the fact that my flesh just has to DIE.  Nothing like a funeral to remind you of how finite you are, eh?  There’s no way around it.  There’s no cute or politically correct way to deal with it.  The flesh just has to be subdued, overcome, and obliterated.  Because given one inch, that joker will take 2 miles and try to take me back to that familiar place that I left behind.  I have no business going back to Egypt, so I must make a conscious, intentional, deliberate decision to consecrate myself to the holy things of God.

I was also reminded that I won’t “just happen to fall into” consecration – I must plan to make holy choices, then execute them (ironically, execute means “to carry out or perform,” but it also means “to kill or put to death”).  Proper planning with poor implementation or execution does not lead to ultimate success.  Only when I walk faithfully in a God-given plan can I expect for Him to be glorified.  Once again, the outcome is contingent on my obedience – not my desires, intentions, or what I wish would happen, but just good, ol’ fashioned, nose-to-the-grindstone walking in agreement with God’s will and His Word.

During my (admittedly long-overdue) Quiet Time this morning, I thought I was gonna read James 4:10 about humbling myself.  Well, did God ever have a different direction in mind – He led me to Ezekiel 22 and Ezekiel 23 and went Old Testament on me about the idolatry in my own heart – whoa!  It was sobering to say the least (and humbling, too).  I strongly urge you to read these chapters today, for they put into perspective why we can’t pretend these perilous times are “business as usual” – because they’re not.  This is not the time to “play crazy” with the instructions of God; we must clean up our acts and get in right standing with our Creator.  We can’t righteously judge sin and idolatry in others when we’re participating in it or harboring it ourselves!  We must stay in proper position to minister (effectively and with power) to others, for the time is short.

NOW is the time to cleanse yourself of whatever idols are lurking and lingering in your life.  I challenge you to admit what has drawn away your affections from your First Love – then repent and get back into intimate fellowship, communion, and relationship with Him.  I won’t let pride keep me from sharing my personal prayer of repentance – may you be blessed as you experience His cleansing holiness and His unconditional love for you today!

Lord, You are evermore faithful to speak, but I just hadn’t been tuned into Your righteous frequency.  Forgive me and cleanse me now, I pray, Dear Father.  Forgive me for my acts of unrighteousness, idolatry, and whoredom against Your holiness.  I repent for allowing myself to gradually, incrementally, and progressively slide away from Your straight and narrow path, compromising Your unbending standard of holiness.  Truly, You change not, so help me not to change in the face of temptation, unrighteousness, and the lure of temporarily pleasing the flesh, which leads only to destruction and death.  In Jesus’ holy name I pray, Amen.

“But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
(I Peter 1:15-16)

© Copyright 2012 by Kayren J. Cathcart