14 March 2013

beans + rice + entitlement

12 days of beans + rice. 

Well, I take that back, I had pizza at Sam's Club one of those days... not really on purpose, we ordered one slice per boy... who knew 4 slices equaled one pizza?  It just seemed wrong to throw the extra away.

I learned a few things over the last 12 days.  Some meaningful, others not so much.
  • I am such a lazy breakfast person.  Like seriously.  Scrambling eggs felt like I was making a four course meal.  Opening yogurt or pouring cereal is SO much easier.
  • I am not very good at making apple chips.  I'd say half a batch out of 3 batches was perfect, the rest were so-so.
  • I cannot for the life of me figure out how to make wheat bread rise.  But the boys loved the homemade bread, even if it was a bit on the shorty-side.
  • Peeling hard boiled eggs also seems to take a sweet forever.  Might have to try to crack that code.
  • My sugar addiction is worse than I imagined.  I thought about sweets a lot.  Like a lot a lot.  
  •  The combo of beans + rice and way-more-eggs than normal does not make one gassy like you would think.  TMI?  
  • My guys are troopers.  Especially Brad.  Poor guy had a terrible sinus infection but stuck to the beans + rice diet.   Also, Lincoln & Franklin did their best to gag down some beans each night.
  • Dinner prep is so simple when you make the same thing every day.  Grocery shopping is also quite delightful when you make the same thing for dinner every night.

To clarify, none of the above were the meaningful lessons.  Well, except for maybe the part about my guys.

I wish I could say that I was super convicted about the amount of food we throw away or about how much money we waste on groceries and eating out.  It would be easier to talk about that, than the real things that were uncovered.

First off, I am a super whiny-baby.  Poor Brad.  I am pretty sure I made a statement about wanting hot cocoa or that Almond Joy every single night.  He would just remind me that I signed up for this... I think he actually said, "you made a big-girl decision, now you need to stick with it like a big-girl."

Secondly, when I considered the whiny-baby-tendency coupled with all the excess that is available to me, I realized that deep down I felt like I was entitled to a little sweet each day.  After all, I was sticking to the plan.  Didn't I deserve a treat?  Oh middle class American and the things I think I deserve.  I'm currently reading a segment from Mended by Angie Smith each morning.  The other day I read "The Tyranny of Choice."  It summed up pretty well the place I find myself.

I've been convicted and overwhelmed over the nature of my humanity and the fickleness that is bred in entitlement.  It started a long, long time ago in a garden where God gave them what was good, but they didn't think it was good enough for them.  The first man and woman felt entitled to choose what they wanted even when He told them that choice was forbidden.  They didn't need it.  They weren't entitled to everything.  He had given them everything the needed.  He had given them Himself.... 
When you expect a choice in every situation, you need to pause and consider what is driving you.  Has God given you what you need?  Are you being overwhelmed by a drive to choose from a tree He has forbidden?...
I don't need a thousand choices in this life.  I need Him. 
I'm desperate for Him, actually.
 When you are tempted to feel overwhelmed by first-world problems and choices, whisper that word under your breath until you feel your bones ache with Truth.  Him. Him. Him.  He gave Himself.
There's no time to wonder about what else He could have given you.  Every bit of it is irrelevant in light of Him.  Live a life that loves Him back.  Choose well.  He is enough.

I'm humbled and bent low.  I knew I loved sugar, I didn't realize I felt entitled to it. 

I'm also reading two other books right now {I know that's a lot of books at one time! I'm taking my time with each of them, and I don't think its a mistake that they are overlapping.}  Orphan Justice and The Circle Maker.  I think it is fair to say I am a mess. It's uncomfortable.  Parts are just plain ugly.  I'm thankful for the pruning, because I know there is no growth without it.    I can honestly say I am done predicting what He is going to tell me in this.  I just want to lean in close and listen.

The other morning, I found myself in Nehemiah, and this verse resonated:

"When I heard these words, I sat down and wept and mourned for days; and I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven."  Nehemiah 1:4

I think there is much more pruning to come.

I'm so grateful for the other ladies doing this with me.  It's been a blessing and encouragement to hear how they are being challenged too.  There were a few times where my self-talk could pretty much convince me that "this whole thing is sort of dumb and silly."  Without fail, another lady in the group would share something meaningful and get my brains back on track.

Up next?  Clothing.  Oh boy.

1 comment:

  1. What a great experience! I will read the book, some day! Those are some fun things that you learned! :) And some not so fun ones. Love that your family is supporting you so well. I'm a lazy breakfast person as well. I feel entitled to just a few minutes of quiet with my coffee before I MUST take care of everyone else's needs! Oh my.

    Here is the bread recipe I have been using. I half it for 2 loaves. The fresh one is always better, the second one gets a little crumbly but still good - especially toasted.