The best way to make the biggest mess in the kitchen is to invite your children to be your sous chef. It is also a great way to make dinner preparation take twice as long. I’m pretty sure there will be special awards in heaven for mother’s who, despite these two facts, still let their children join in. (I’m hoping anyway!)
The other day, I let Elijah, age 7, stand on a chair next to me at the stove and learn how to sauté onions and peppers for spaghetti sauce. Henry, age 3, pushed a chair over to the stove and asked for a job too. I told him he could stir the pasta once we added it to the water. While I was in the pantry locating the spaghetti noodles, Henry hopped up onto his chair. When I returned to my little chefs, I could no longer reach either the spaghetti sauce pan or the pasta pot.
“Excuse me boys,” I interrupted as they happily stirred their pots, “I need to stand there.”
“But Mama,” protested Henry, “then I can’t reach!”
It took me a moment not to say the following to my three year old: Henry. I know how to make pasta. You do not. It does not make ANY sense for you to stand in front of the pot when you haven’t the foggiest idea of what to do! Not to mention, I know how much pasta to put in, I know what water looks like when it is boiling AND I know how to put the noodles in without breaking them so we can have long noodles instead of short, sad-excuse-for-spaghetti-noodles…
I was so proud of myself for leaving my little speech for another time.
Then I thought of the times I have resisted when the Lord asks to stand in the position of Master Chef in my life.
“But Lord! Then I can’t reach! I want a say in this too!”
The Lord might respond to me, “I will always include you (even though it slows things down) I will always let you pull up a chair and help (even though it makes a mess) but if you resist me as the Master Chef, the Feast will never reach its full potential. Turn it over to me, and I will make you so much more than you could ever be if you stand up in the front right now.”
We like to say “Accept the Lord’s Will,” but in the 22 months since my daughter died, I’ve wondered over and over again, if we fully realize the extent to which we are agreeing to His terms. We are saying that we will take anything and still remain true to our Savior.
Staying on His side even when we have to live our worst nightmare will allow Him to make our families into something beyond our wildest dreams….
The idea of my three year old, on his own, carrying out the steps to make spaghetti is laughable. I wonder if God wishes we would see that about ourselves as well.
As we strive to place Christ at the center of our lives by learning His words, by following His teachings, and by walking in His path, He has promised to share with us the eternal life that He died to gain. There is no higher end than this, that we should choose to accept His discipline and become His disciples and do His work throughout our lives. Nothing else, no other choice we make, can make of us what He can.
Thanks for studying with me today!
S: (Prayer/Ask) What will I become if I step aside and let the Lord be the Master Chef?
- Watch this great 3 minute clip of Elder Christofferson teaching the story of the Current Bush from Hugh B. Brown. Or read it here
- The Lord sends his prophet Jeremiah to the potter’s house. As Jeremiah watched, the Lord’s words came to him.
1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,
2 Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words.
3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.
4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.
5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. (Jeremiah 18:1-6)
- Continuing with the beautiful theme of the Potter and the clay, read these verses from Isaiah. I put them out of order because when I read them, I thought– how can we ‘strive with [our] Maker’ when He gives us such promises!!
(verse 9) Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou?… (Isaiah 45:9)
(verses 2-3) I will go before thee, and make the crooked places straight: I will break in pieces the gates of brass, and cut in sunder the bars of iron:
And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the Lord, which call thee by thy name, am the God of Israel. (Isaiah 45:2-3)
- Read the JST of John 6:44
No man can come unto me, except he doeth the will of my Father who hath sent me. And this is the will of him who hath sent me, that ye receive the Son; for the Father beareth record of him; and he who receiveth the testimony, and doeth the will of him who sent me, I will raise up in the resurrection of the just.
- Here is a quote from Elder Neal A. Maxwell. It is long- but each of his points ring true!!
Another cosmic fact: only by aligning our wills with God’s is full happiness to be found. Anything less results in a lesser portion (see Alma 12:10–11)…
So many of us are kept from eventual consecration because we mistakenly think that, somehow, by letting our will be swallowed up in the will of God, we lose our individuality (see Mosiah 15:7). What we are really worried about, of course, is not giving up self, but selfish things—like our roles, our time, our preeminence, and our possessions. No wonder we are instructed by the Savior to lose ourselves (see Luke 9:24). He is only asking us to lose the old self in order to find the new self. It is not a question of one’s losing identity but of finding his true identity! Ironically, so many people already lose themselves anyway in their consuming hobbies and preoccupations but with far, far lesser things.
Ever observant, in both the first and second estates, consecrated Jesus always knew in which direction He faced: He consistently emulated His Father: “The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise” (John 5:19), for “I have suffered the will of the Father in all things from the beginning” (3 Ne. 11:11).
As one’s will is increasingly submissive to the will of God, he can receive inspiration and revelation so much needed to help meet the trials of life. In the trying and very defining Isaac episode, faithful Abraham “staggered not … through unbelief” (Rom. 4:20). Of that episode John Taylor observed that “nothing but the spirit of revelation could have given him this confidence, and … sustained him under these peculiar circumstances” (in Journal of Discourses, 14:361). Will we too trust the Lord amid a perplexing trial for which we have no easy explanation? Do we understand—really comprehend—that Jesus knows and understands when we are stressed and perplexed? The complete consecration which effected the Atonement ensured Jesus’ perfect empathy; He felt our very pains and afflictions before we did and knows how to succor us (see Alma 7:11–12; 2 Ne. 9:21). Since the Most Innocent suffered the most, our own cries of “Why?” cannot match His. But we can utter the same submissive word “nevertheless …” (Matt. 26:39).
Progression toward submission confers another blessing: an enhanced capacity for joy…
…Jesus declared, we must “settle this in [our] hearts” that we will do what He asks of us (JST, Luke 14:28). President Young further counseled us “to submit to the hand of the Lord, … and acknowledge his hand in all things, … then you will be exactly right; and until you come to that point, you cannot be entirely right. That is what we have to come to” (in Journal of Discourses, 5:352)….
In conclusion, the submission of one’s will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God’s altar. The many other things we “give,” brothers and sisters, are actually the things He has already given or loaned to us. However, when you and I finally submit ourselves, by letting our individual wills be swallowed up in God’s will, then we are really giving something to Him! It is the only possession which is truly ours to give!
Consecration thus constitutes the only unconditional surrender which is also a total victory!
- The Lord sent Jeremiah to a potter’s house to learn this lesson of who needs to be in charge. I was reminded of this while cooking with my children. When in your life have you been taught this lesson of letting the Lord be in charge?
- When do I try to take the Master Chef’s place as the Creator of the Feast?
- The JST of John 6:44 includes these words, “receive the Son.” What do you think this means?
R: (Write) your thoughts, what you learned, impressions you received, and anything else in your scripture journal (include your thoughts on the study session question: What will I become if I step aside and let the Lord be the Master Chef?)
- Write down a few ways that you feel you have “received the Son” into your life. (John 6:44, see above)
- Think of a time in your life that you have faithfully yielded to His Will. Write down a few specific blessings you feel came from this experience.
- Find one or two lines from Neal A. Maxwell’s talk that spoke strongly to you. Copy them down into your scripture journal.
E: (Prayer/Thank)- thank God for what you’ve learned and ask if there is anymore.
The Challenge: In your prayers today, when you say “let thy will be done,” keep in mind the immensity of this statement. Pray that your faith will help you accept His Will, whatever it may be.
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