Sunday, October 10, 2010

Famous for Pies

“Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31

A devotional by Debra E. Marvin
(and yes, we're on a pie kick here at the Inkwell!) If eating pie can be done to the Glory of God, cut me another slice!

My grandparents lived with us when I was growing up. I was an only child, and their only granddaughter. I learned how to bake at Gramma’s side. My mother never cared to learn, seeing no reason to work in the woman’s shadow, but for me it was a love I’ll never lose.

We had desserts at every meal, banana bread was a constant, and quite often fresh pies.

Lemon meringue, apricot, apple, custard. The whole gamut. Gramma didn’t need a recipe. She just knew. I recall a trip to a relative’s house in Pennsylvania when my grandmother made at least 30 pies for their freezer. She was famous for her pies.

Is there any thing like fresh pie? When I get pie at a restaurant, there’s a chance it’s going to be commercially made pie or maybe a homemade style pie. At the grocery store? Forget it. Nothing is as good as homemade.

As my grandmother aged, and began to lose her stamina and her memories, I became the designated pie person. I’ll never come close to ‘famous for pies’ and now I only make them for special occasions. The days of having fresh pie for dessert every weekend are long gone.

I don’t recall my grandmother ever showing boredom or resentment at her gift. She enjoyed giving her time and effort to see someone else's enjoyment. I have to say that when I am baking those last minute pies for a holiday, I sometimes wish I didn’t have to—and I don’t have to. I can go out and buy a store pie and forego the backache. But I’d never be happy with it and neither would Gramma.

We each have gifts that start out as an interest to which we show some affinity. Being a good cook is great, because we all have to eat. But baking is different, because as much as I hate to say it, baked desserts are not essential--just pleasurable. For me, baking is relaxing and an act of love. But don’t ask me to make thirty pies for your freezer!

Pie will always remind me of my grandmother. I never bake without thinking of her; I don’t even eat pie without thinking of her. She was a feisty, fun, hardworking woman before Alzheimer’s took her away, just as it’s taken my mother away now. I have one small bowl that Gramma always used for meringue. It’s an old stoneware bowl, marked with years of use. I hope my granddaughter shows an interest in baking. It will tie her to a great, great grandmother she never knew, and to me. I hope to pass on not only that bowl, but also a love of baking and these intergenerational memories.

What do you do that you’re good at and people turn to you for? Fix a hem, comfort a friend, bake a casserole, intercessory prayer? In Niki Turner's post this past Friday, she exhorted us to use our strengths. It doesn't have to mean we are being proud, or bragging. It just makes sense, and really, we're being ungracious to deny our Father's gifts.

For most of us, it’s not easy to name our talents or gifts. But you have at least one, I’m sure of it. Something you do well and enjoy. Acknowledge that gift today. Ask a friend. They'll know what it is!

Your gifts, your ‘talents’ were not given to you to hide away but to use to invest in others. Don't waste that gift. Be faithful to use it!

Dear Father, Help us to humbly acknowledge the strengths and gifts you've given us. Give us the wisdom to use them for Your purposes. You've fit us for marvelous things Lord God and we thank You for making each one of us unique and qualified to be a blessing to others!

Romans 12:5-7
So in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach.

You may not be famous for anything now, but the faithful use of your talents will bring you commendation from the one who gave it, and will bless others in ways you may never know.

Have a blessed week, friends! I'd love to sit and enjoy a piece of pie with you. What's your favorite flavor?

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  1. Lovely post! I have a stoneware crock my grandmother used to use when homemade whipped cream for one of her many pies. Thanks for this reminder of her love and my God's!

  2. Good morning!

    Thanks for commenting, Renee Ann.
    I'm so glad you also have that special dish from your grandmother, and all the memories that go with it.

    Did you live close enough to her to enjoy those pies on a regular basis?

  3. Ugh! This pie kick is not good for my diet. No wonder I've been staring at the pies everytime I go to the grocery store. I'm going to crack soon!

    Love Romans 12, though. I'm good at teaching, exhorting, worshipping, working with teens and children. This year I've seen a shift in my ministry as a number of twenty-something women have come to me asking for counseling and mentoring. I guess they're the teens I worked with ten years ago and the kids I taught in Sunday School twenty years ago.

  4. Mmmmm....Deb, my favorite pie is pumpkin! I remember one Thanksgiving when I was a gangly tween, I ate five pies by myself. Not so sure I could do that now, however, if there's pumpkin pie around, I do eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I have no restraint.

    Great post on talents/gifts, too. I "think" mine is encouragement.

  5. Dina, the gift of time and ministry to teen girls is so important. What a time in our lives when we most need the advice of a Godly woman we trust, besides Mom.

    Suzie Jo, it's so great to see you here. I've been thinking of you a lot lately! I can't resist pumpkin pie either! yum!

  6. Enjoyable post. Thanks
    Right now I think that my only "talent" is adaptability.
    Ha Is that a talent?
    My grandma baked bread, sugar cookies and made the best fried chicken. When I would go to her house, we would start at the beginning - catch the chicken. This post brought back some wonderful memories. I have my grandma's sugar cookie recipe but for some reason, it just doesn't taste the same. I think to her just putting ingredients in and actually measuring makes a difference.

  7. Theresa! I have to say I've never had the pleasure of catching my own meal other than fish! Fried chicken's sounding awfully good right now.

    Thanks for commenting today. I am sure that adaptability is a talent (so many of us don't have) :)

  8. Laughing at Dina saying she is going to crack soon.I totally am a pie person and I know Cherry is my absolute favorite although Key Lime Pie is also a wonderful thing.

  9. Louise, cherry with vanilla ice cream? That's the best! Warm, of course...

  10. Ohhh, I am really hungry. My favorite pies are either pumpkin-y (like plain ol' pumpkin, sour cream pumpkin, pumpkin cheesecake, etc) or have a bit of "tart" to them, like berry or rhubarb or peach.

    Thanks for the reminder to use our gifts, Deb. Loved the post.

  11. I'd say adaptability is definitely a talent. Especially to the extent Theresa R must practice it!!

    My favorite kind of pie=Pumpkin. I love the smell of apple pie, but I don't really like to eat it. Weird, I know.

    Thanks for the sweet and perfectly delicious devotion, Deb.

  12. Beautiful writing, Deb. I love blueberry--actually, all berry pies.


  13. Broke down. Razzle dazzle deep dish pie in oven as I type. Not homemade - but home baked.

  14. Pumpkin - I had pumpkin praline ice cream out tonight, and topped it off with a slice of pumpkin cake when I got back home. Skipped the pumpkin cheescake on the restaurent menu.
    Susie - I noticed going through my recipes yesterday that I had at least ten pumpkin desserts and they all looked good!

    Hi Patti! I haven't made a plain berry pie in awhile but we do a three cobbler on and off in July. I found out yesterday that my favorite homemade pie restaurant in Pennsylvania burned last April. They were 'famous for pie' and I never could choose one. I think I had black raspberry the last time I was there. Yum-O! Thanks for stopping in, my friend!

  15. Lisa. I AM SHOCKED yet admire your willingness to admit such a thing in a public forum!

    Dina, I feel slightly responsible for that pie in the oven, but oooh, it sounds so good! Hope you enjoyed every bite.

    My entire family went out to a very fancy and delish Italian restaurant for dinner to celebrate my son's 30th. As full as I am, I could make room for razzle dazzle berry pie!

    Thanks for all the comments, dear friends! Have a great week

  16. Really enjoyed this post. "Me oh my how I love pie..."- Andie McDowell


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