Friday, October 22, 2010

Cooking and the Modern Christian Mom

by Gina Welborn

My kids think I can’t cook. Which is odd because our cousins from New Jersey who come to visit during Thanksgiving week think I'm a fabulous cook. Someone's deluded.

I’m decent great cook, though. In my 16 years of being a mom, I’ve discovered that one doesn't t have to follow a recipe exactly. And if one doesn’t have baking powder, one can substitute baking soda mixed with cream of tartar. (Or is that the other way around?)

I made a coffeecake once using a yellow cake mix (mixed according to box instructions), butter, and crushed Oreo cookies. And it tasted scrumpulicious. Of course, no one wanted to eat it until my hubby guinea-pigged through the first piece, but that's neither here nor there. My 9x13 pan came home empty.

What's helped my cooking skills over the last few years has been watching The Food Network. Alton Brown talks toasters...which leads to French toast...which leads to me realizing I hadn't been letting my bread dry out the night before.  Duh.

Listen and learn, girlfriend. Listen and learn.

When we were first married, my hubby decided to make some chocolate chip cookies all on his own. I heard him banging around in the kitchen for days upon days (actual time: 6 minutes).

Finally, he yelled, “Gina, if your cookies are kinda runny, what do would you do?”
I said, “Add more flour.”
Minutes later he said, “More flour isn’t working.”
“How much extra did you add?”
“Two cups.”
With my Julia Child-shocked-expression, I headed to the kitchen. I picked up a container. “You added this to the dough?”
“Yes,” he said, glaring at me as if I were not Julia Child.
Controlling my laughter, I said, “This is powdered sugar, not flour. Couldn’t you smell the difference, see the difference, taste the difference?”
Let’s just say he wasn’t too pleased with my comment.

No matter how much we listen and learn, we aren't gonna be good at everything. That's okay. We aren't supposed to. Dare I even say God didn't created us to be.

There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other.
~1 Corinthians 13: 4-7 (NLT)

One of my critique partners, when talking about our group, once said, “We each bring something different to the table.” Another way of saying that is “We each have a part, a job, a skill, a strength that benefits someone else.” (I can easily say that about my fellow Inkwell ladies.)

The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit....God has put each part just where he wants it. ~1 Corinthians 12: 12-13, 18 (NLT)

What your foot said, “I’m tired of only being a foot. I want to be a hand so I can touch things or an eye so I can see Bobby Flay cook.”

Or liver: “I’m sick of processing toxins. Lemme be the tongue so I can taste the food before it takes a bath in stomach acid."

Or ear: “Two’s a crowd. I’m leaving so I can be the only ear.”

Or bottom: “I’m tired of being sat on and unappreciated. I want to be a mouth so I can enjoy Paula Dean's fried chicken.”

God placed each part of our bodies in the prime spot for them to do the exact things for which they were created to do. Even the parts of the body that seem weakest aren’t purposeless. Imagine not having a thumb. Or no hair in your nose. That hair has a purpose. Not a purpose I really want to think about at the moment, but a purpose nonetheless.

Fortunately, in a human body, each part does its job and only its job. A heart can only pump blood and not chew Twizzlers. And if the heart doesn’t do what it’s supposed to do, you need a new heart...or you’re dead.

In a family, a friendship, a writing group, etc., sometimes the wrong part is doing the wrong job, which causes stress and discouragement because the part isn’t doing what it was created to do. Square peg in a round hole.

Other times a part is too busy focusing on what the other part is doing/has that the original part forgets to do its job or appreciate what the job and skills it has.

Dina's new brand is "Dance with Passion." I utterly love her brand because it sums up any and all of her writing, as well as her as a person. Yet no matter how much I love Dina's brand, I could never get away with using it as my own. It's not me. I can't be Dina, despite how easy it would be to switch the G in my name to  D. God doesn't want me to be Dina. He created me to be that I can grow to be more like Him.

As followers of Jesus, we are to take on and live out the heart, attitude, and mindset of Jesus.

You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross. ~Phillippians 2: 5-8

Serving other helps us to become more like Jesus.
Serving others provides an opportunity for us to show others Jesus.
Serving others is LOVE IN ACTION.

Serious Question of the Day :: Can you name someone you know who lives out the attitude and mindset of Jesus? Or has there been a time when you were doing a job you weren't supposed to do or a time when God told you to step up and take that job?

Non-Serious Question of the Day :: What job would you could do but never want to have to do?


  1. Gina, I would have to say that I have at least one child who wishes I had less dancing/writing/teaching gifts and more cooking/cleaning/serving gifts.

    Oh well.

    I can only hope that growing up with me will help him accept the wife he marries, although he's currently looking for someone with serious domestic skills.

    The job that I "can" do but that sucks all the life and energy and patience right out of me is working with anyone in the 2-5 year old range. In general I'm good with kids and do work with them a lot, but there have been times when people tried to push me into the wrong age group. Praise Jesus my youngest is eight now.

  2. I soooo agree with you about working with someone in a certain age range. 3rd-5th graders are the most stressful for me, which is hard when I have a child in that age range. Fortunately, I'm doing better with the 5th grader. Unfortunately, I'm struggling with the 2nd grader.

    In fact, my last month has been soooo unaccomplishable because I've spent so much time focusing on and working with child #4. Who knew she would be my most strong-willed.

    I've found that when working at Vacation Bible School, I'm best being in charge of serving snacks. That way when I come across an annoying child, I only have 10 minutes with him. Not sure how the small group leader do it.

  3. Great post, Gina.

    When I worked in my kids' kindergarten classrooms, I always felt guilty when I left because I always had a headache (and generally, paint on my pants). I loved the kids and they are so funny at that age, but they'd wear me out. I finally realized that God didn't make me to be a kindergarten teacher, so let go of the guilt. I admire K teachers so much for their creativity, positive outlook, stamina, and love for the kids.

  4. How funny,
    My sister and I are on completely different ends of the spectrum.I am the cleaning,cooking,etc person.She on the other hand is the quite introvert that would rather be sitting somewhere writing in complete silence or teaching someone how to do something.

  5. Susanne, I agree! Last year one of my kids' teachers called and asked me to be the room parent. Uggh. I ended up saying no.

    Of course, you hit on a good point: letting go of the guilt. Why is it we beat ourselves up over not being good at something or not liking something? It's okay. We're not all gifted to work with children. I love teenagers...up to a certain time exposure level. The first three days at youth camp, I'm good. The second...well, sometimes I need alone time.

  6. Louise, American Airlines currently has flights on sale. Please come to my house. I need your cooking and cleaning skills. :-)

    It's it amazing how despite similiar DNA, we can be sooo different from our siblings.

  7. Gina, excellent post!
    I love good food. Food that tastes real and fresh.

    I think that recipes are more like guidelines or suggestions... love to substitue what I have on hand.

    I'm not so good with little ones, but we call my daughter Rachael the child whisperer because she has the gift...

    Since I'm a real introvert, being a political wife was a challenge.


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