Preserving Faith

Lots of garden-fresh veggies!
Lots of garden-fresh veggies!

 

Beautiful cucumbers from the Evelands.
Beautiful cucumbers from the Evelands.

 

Some of the pickles and spaghetti sauce.
Some of the pickles and spaghetti sauce.

 

And some salsa!
And some salsa!

Sept. 3, 2013

Hebrews 11:27

By faith Moses left Egypt, unafraid of the king’s anger; for he persevered as though he saw him who is invisible.

I love to can. Unfortunately, our garden is not doing so hot this year. I was not confident I would have enough veggies to can or freeze this year.

While at a local high school football game, friends said their family garden had an abundance of cucumbers. The next morning, I had a milk crate of cucumbers in the kitchen sink. By day’s end, we had 16 quarts of beautiful dill pickles.

While we have some tomatoes, it is not the normal crop. I debated if I had enough to can. While at the local garden market, I saw boxes of tomatoes for $8. Sold.

I went home and began making my favorite spaghetti sauce and salsa. I laid out the wonderful, fresh ingredients on the kitchen table and marveled. Brilliant colors. Smooth, soft skins. Powerful flavors.  Fresh aromas. Ahh! As beautiful as they looked and smelled, this would not last long. The way to preserve them for the winter is to cook them, bottle them and process them. Those gorgeous veggies become yummy sauces and bases for lip-smacking-good lasagna, a great dip for chips and mouth-watering casseroles. Soon the kettle was cooking.

A few days later, I sent my father-in-law to get sweet corn from a neighbor, offered to us. A couple hours later, I had multiple containers of creamy corn to freeze, a favorite at Vielhuber family gatherings.

These vegetables began as little seeds and become plants that produced colorful, yummy  vegetables. But veggies only last so long. When preserved through canning or freezing, they stop growing and are food we enjoy all winter. This happens as they are cooked with heat, processed with boiling water and chemically changed.

Christian faith experiences similar situations. Raw faith is exciting and fresh. When difficult situations arise and we experience heat, faith discovers if it can persevere. Faith needs to encounter boiling points so we learn not to depend upon ourselves. We depend upon the One who journeys with us daily. Like the veggies, we need a chemical change inside of us to discover how to persevere in our faith.

Moses had been through a pressure-cooker situation. He’d watched Pharaoh and the Egyptians withstand 10 awful plagues. Finally, Moses was allowed to leave with the Hebrew people. As he left, he acted as if the Invisible One was visible. That’s how strong his faith had become.

Pressure and challenging situations are not fun. Remember the veggies and what happens to them as they are preserved. I pray your faith is just as preserved.

Lord God – How easy it is to blame you when we encounter a pressured-filled situation. We want to change You rather than change ourselves. Help us remember that you walk with us through those faith preserving times of our lives. Encourage us to discover faith that perseveres. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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