June 9, 2009

Belgium Waffle Days

I originally wrote this for my church newsletter two years ago. I think it bears repeating, though, because I find myself with Belgium waffles often these days. And what I wrote then still challenges me today.

I have a culinary confession to make.

I hate Belgium waffles.

At least, I don’t like the kind they serve at restaurants. I ordered waffles on the menu once; out came the waitress ten minutes later with my breakfast, full of squares the size of asteroid craters. Another ten minutes passed before I could butter each individual hole. Then I spent an extra five minutes trying to pour an adequate amount of syrup over them. By then my waffle, all the way from Belgium, was cold. And soggy.

I never ordered them again.

Now I do like frozen waffles. The kind you put in the toaster. This particular variety has much smaller, more manageable holes. Butter spreads easily over the squares and I don’t have to worry about drowning them in syrup. Breakfast with frozen waffles is quick, easy, and satisfying. And if you can find them with chocolate chips already baked in, well! You can avoid the syrup nightmare entirely.

I wish God shared my views on breakfast. When He is serving up the circumstances of my life, I wish He would remember that I don’t like to work for my food. I want my patience to spread easily. I don’t want too much conflict poured over my life.

Wouldn’t it be great if every day could be a frozen waffle day?

But alas! Even when God is the Chef of your life, Belgium waffles happen.

A close friend betrays your trust. Your four-month-old spends the day inconsolable unless you’re holding him. Dinner burns on the stove. Unexpected insurance bills arrive in the mail. Your temper causes an unpleasant fight with your spouse.

Some Belgium waffles are our own making. Others are outside our control. But whether large or small, conflict is the price we pay for our mistake in Eden, so long ago. Jesus very wisely warned us “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). But thankfully the verse doesn’t end there. He completes this discouraging thought with hope: “But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Jesus also promises a way to stomach the Belgium waffles that come into our lives: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9). When conflict is on the menu, Jesus promises us a side of Grace and an extra helping of Power to get us through the difficult situation.

Translation? We never eat alone.

Whatever waffles are on our menu for today, Christ is there, sitting across the table, helping us to accept them and digest them. He is, after all, the Master Chef and Master Physician. Nothing is put on our plate without His approval.


LeAnna said...

GREAT read! Thanks for sharing this.
(For the record, I really, really, rrrreally like frozen waffles, too...)

La Petite Maison said...

I thoroughly enjoyed this post! Although I prefer my home-made waffles to the frozen variety. ;)