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The Veggies and The Gospel

May we meet people where they are and invite them into a journey of the Gospel with us.

My daughter is turning three in October and it has been such a privilege to be her dad. There are moments when I step back and am in awe that God would allow me to partner with him in raising this child – such a blessing! And then, I step into the current situation at hand and the scream is piercing my ears and my mind triggers in that moment (just as a piece of broccoli comes hurling through the air), “DUCK!”

Have you ever tried to force a kid to eat their vegetables? It’s just not going to happen. I’ve tried everything; I’ve put colossal amounts of butter on them to disguise the taste, I’ve tried to hide them in other foods, or blend them up in a smoothly. I even tried to give her a crash course on why veggies are good for her and what they will do to her body if she eats them, all of this to no avail.

In a state of weakness I asked Olivia if she would like to cook with me, and to my surprise she said, “YES!” We were preparing the dinner and she was working with me step by step through the whole process. And then we got to the veggies, and again to my surprise she really got into preparing her meal. We talked about the process of cooking, the benefits of each food, and mostly we made it fun and exciting! As we sat down to eat at the table, she sang her prayer, and then we started digging in to eat. I look up and to my amazement… you guessed it, Olivia had eaten her entire plate of veggies.

You know, so many times we treat the Gospel like we treat trying to show a toddler (or a grown man) how important veggies are for them. We default to adding something to the Gospel (smothering with butter), or we try to trick them into coming to church (hiding in a smoothie), or we tell them all the facts that we’ve learned from our recent Bible study. All of which comes up flat and people not only resent the Gospel, but they start to resent us as well.

As Mark spoke about on Sunday, let’s give people something that they can use. May we meet people where they are and invite them into a journey of the Gospel with us (cooking our veggies). As we let people in and show them the Gospel with our lives, they start to see who Christ really is and how they too can start eating their veggies… I mean, be a part of His Kingdom.

 

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