Sunday, October 3, 2010

Raisin’ Love with Raisin Pie

by Susanne Dietze

Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. 1 John 3:18

It’s easy to tell my husband that I love him. He’s God’s gift to me, and what a gift. We daily say “I love you,” but it’s important to show him love, too. One way we nourish our relationship is by showing each other little acts of affection, like when I send notes in his work bag and prepare his favorite foods.
Raisin PieImage by jimmywayne via Flickr

Well, not all of his favorite foods. There’s Raisin Pie to consider. When Thanksgiving rolls around, I brace myself for his request. He loves Raisin Pie, and I absolutely do not. Because I don’t eat it, I never want to bake it, even though it makes my husband happy.

It’s easier for me to show love when I enjoy the task or the outcome of my work (like when I bake a flavor of pie that I enjoy eating, too). But when opportunities arise to show love in ways that aren’t as enjoyable, we can rise to the occasion by doing the task out of love for God, showing devotion to Him in a way that also blesses others.

St. Thèrése of Lisieux, the nineteenth century Carmelite nun, wrote, “I seek little opportunities, mere trifles, to give pleasure to Jesus; for instance a smile, a pleasant word when inclined to be silent and to show weariness."

When we deliberately sit at the potluck with the person who gets on our nerves, or clean a stranger's mess at the food court in the mall, or make Raisin Pie for the sheer love of our God, we “give pleasure to Jesus.” We can transform each chore or irritant into an act of devotion to God by doing the task cheerfully for Him.

I'll be keeping that in mind. After all, Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I have a pie to bake.

What sorts of small acts could you offer that would show love to God and those around you?
Have you ever had raisin pie? If you're like me and prefer something else, what's your favorite flavor?

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  1. One thing I've learned about relationships is that if someone I have to deal with annoys me, they are there for a reason and it's not to make my life miserable to be stretch me.


  2. I echo that statement Deb. As much as I'd like to run away from certain situations, I believe that God wants me to stay put, be more compassionate, and show greater love. I need to surrender that to Him and serve Him by showing care for His children, even if they or the tasks involved aren't my favorite.

    I hope you have a good morning!

  3. Love pies but haven't tried raisin. I think I'd like it. And I can't pick a favorite, it depends on my mood. High on the list are peach, mixed berry, pumpkin and pecan. Mmm...must run to store.

    Notice I didn't answer the other question. I'm still trying to wrap my brain around how to do that without being fake. I think I'm finally starting to learn, but for so many years I offered outward conformity with a bad attitude on the inside, I really don't want to fall back into that.

  4. I really want to try this raisin pie.

    As for doing small things for others - I have taken to giving my husband back rubs without asking for one in return. Baby steps. Perhaps next week I can do another small thing for someone else.

  5. Bex, I'm cracking up at your backrub analogy. That's a tender issue in my house, too! LOL.

    Here's the raisin pie recipe I use. I can make no claim to its tastiness because I won't eat it :-) I just don't like raisins...but it smells good and it's very easy. Which shames me more because I should make it and be nice about it. I hope you enjoy it!

    Raisin Pie

    2 unbaked pie crusts (I just use Pillsbury)
    2/3 c. packed brown sugar
    2 T cornstarch
    1 1/3 c. water
    2 c. raisins
    1 t. orange zest
    1/2 c. orange juice
    2 T lemon juice

    Preheat oven to 375. Place one pie crust in a 9-inch pie plate. In a saucepan, combine brown sugar and cornstarch. Add water, raisins, zest and juices. Cook and stir until it's bubbly and thick. Remove from heat and transfer to the pastry crust-lined pie plate. Cut slits in the top crust, place over the filling, seal, and flute at the edges. Bake 40-45 minutes.

  6. Well I try to love because I don't know why that person is the way they are and generally I find that when I do not like someone it is because they have some kind of character flaw that I possess and it is God trying to do a work in me. As far as pie goes, I am an all-american Apple Pie and Cherry Pie kinda girl.

  7. Louise, that's excellent advice: we don't always know what someone has gone through. We don't know what's brought them here, what they've been taught, how they were raised. And sometimes they are a bit too much like us, or sometimes they even remind us of someone who hurt us. Thanks for reminding me to look for that.

    Yum, apple pie. I am getting hungry!

  8. Dina, interesting point about how to show love without being fake. I think for me, there are two issues: one is serving through word and deed when laziness or selfishness moves me to do otherwise (ie the raisin pie). Another issue is showing love when someone has hurt me and inside I'm seething about it. (I'm not talking about abuse, but rather when someone irks, insults, and/or frustrates me.)

    For me, in *both* cases the Lord has been working on me to show acts of compassion for others regardless of how I feel, whether I'm feeling hurt or lazy, fake or, well, warmly compassionate. He is teaching me that love is a choice, and He wants me to love others out of love for Him. To stop grumbling, as if I'm serving Him. As if my smile, my casserole, my time, my listening ear, whatever, are for Him, not for the recipient.

    This isn't easy for me. There's a person in my life whom I struggle with. I've written and rewritten this portion of my comment four times, that's how much I'm hurt by this person. But the bottom line is, as much as I'd sorta like to run for the hills, God wants me to show her a bit of the compassion He's shown me. I wish I could say I was serving this woman out of unadulterated love, but if I'm serving her at all right now, it's because I'm acting out of obedience right now, pure and simple. I pray that my attitude adjusts accordingly, because God has shown me grace and forgiveness. I pray that I'll be able to offer this woman grace and forgiveness in Jesus' name.

    I know that's not what you meant, but I needed to work through this, I guess!

  9. Being unselfish at times is hard but the rewards are countless. Raisin pie.... yuk! :O)

  10. Thanks for popping by, Diane! I'm more of a blackberry pie gal, myself.

    Isn't it funny how *hard* it is to do the best thing sometimes? At least it is for me.

    Have a great rest of your weekend.


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