hahaha! Okay, so this is funny. Yesterday, the Mighty Man and I were having lunch with two friends from church and they were telling us about their recent encounter with a rat in their home. This wasn't just any rat, though. It was white with a black face, which led them to believe that it was an escaped pet from a neighbor. Regardless, his color and cuteness couldn't save him, as our friends were forced to put an end to "Charlie's" (the name they gave him) fun by sending him to rodent heaven. :) RIP, Charlie.
The funniest part of the story, though, was when our buddy, whom I will affectionately call Q-T not only because she's a cutie, but because she also is one of the amazing managers of a Quik Trip (Side note. I LOVE that she's part of the most outstanding convenience store chain in the world! All those $.59 summer fountain drinks? Oh, hallelujah! Way to go, lady!! Keep up the great work!)--Okay...What was I saying before I got sidetracked by my love of Quik Trip? Oh, yeah. The funny part of the story.
Anyway, so she was telling us how they'd caught Charlie, which had been by using a trap laced with peanut butter. "It just goes to prove that the love of peanut butter can be deadly," she joked. haha! We all laughed about it, but inside I was, like, REALLY laughing because I was thinking about my recent encounter with this, my favorite nut butter. :)
So, I'd been trying to put on a little weight recently, and I wanted to do it healthfully. I wasn't willing to just eat a bunch of junk food that would turn into fat on my body and clog my arteries. I wanted to do it by eating something that would benefit me physically while giving me the most calories for the fewest bites.
Enter peanut butter. It was a cinch! I just started eating a tablespoon of peanut butter like a pill every night before I went to bed. And, wouldn't you know it, as expected, the scale started to move in the forward direction.
However. . .
It didn't turn into the kind of weight I'd actually wanted. I'm all for a little body fat, but I'd been hoping for muscle instead. Um, memo to me...Protein builds muscle, not fat. haha! Duh!
When I'd been plotting my attack on my BMI, I had just kind of gone with an easy fix instead of really evaluating the goal. Well, it worked in one sense, but not in another. I did gain weight, but it was squishy. haha! Far from being the solid muscle mass on my legs and arms that I was going for.
Anyway, so I decided that my peanut butter pill was not the solution anymore. I'd need to get those extra calories from lean protein sources instead. But what was funny was that in that short amount of time, I had subconsciously developed a love for my peanut butter pill. When it came time to quit, it was hard! I really missed it, and I went to bed with my lower lip sticking out like a little girl pouting that I wouldn't have the taste of ground peanuts in my mouth as I drifted off to sleep. (Don't worry, I'd brushed my teeth beforehand.)
Truly, the love of peanut butter can be "deadly." haha! :)
Isn't it funny how we get attached to things in life like that? And it happens with anything, really. Anything that we look to for fulfillment outside of Jesus Christ can be sources of unhealthy attachments and can, in a sense, be deadly. Not that my peanut butter pill was going to kill me, but it illustrated the point overall.
While the peanut butter was a good thing in helping me put on weight, it wasn't a long-term solution. When it came time to give it up, I needed to be able to release it. But I'd become so attached to it that it wasn't as easy as I thought, and I had an emotional reaction. If I'd kept proper perspecive on it all along, I wouldn't have felt anything but, "Okay, cool--whatev," emotions about it. Small scale analogy of a big-picture truth.
Every good thing in life is given to us by God, and we are to steward them. The Bible says that everything belongs to God, and we are pretty much just renting. When we begin to hold onto these gifts and cling to them as our own, we find ourselves in a bit of a pickle. Eventually, God will call us to give them up, and we will have a really hard time letting go after becoming so attached to them.
I'm sure that's happened to all of us because it happens with EVERYTHING. God gives us relationships, jobs, hobbies, skills, etc., that we can enjoy and use here on earth. But, because everything outside of Him is temporary, we have to give them up at some point. People die and/or leave (sorry if that's blunt). Jobs come and go. Our bodies grow older, forcing us to give up hobbies or abilities. It's all temporary--everything! Everything except the Lord, whom we will eventually join in eternity. And, unless we want to be devastated when we are called to release these gifts, we have to understand that they weren't ours to begin with. They were/are God's.
The best illustration I've heard about this came from Pastor Brett Fuller, who is the pastor of a church in D.C. He talked about how we needed to hold everything with an open hand instead of a closed fist so that when God needed to remove it, He didn't have to break any of our fingers in the process. Don't you love that? It's so true.
I don't know about you, but I'm tired of making God break my fingers when He needs to remove something from my life. And, after my little peanut butter parable, I'm praying that He'll help me to maintain proper perspective when it comes to the good gifts He's given me. May I be willing to hold them all with an open hand and allow Him to give and take as He sees fit! Even if it is something as small as peanut butter. :)
Maybe if Charlie had kept this perspective, he'd be with us today. :) I'm sure Q-T is quite happy that he didn't. haha! :)
Ciao, friends! Hope you have a great week!