Honey, I Blew Up The Microwave!<
I did it! I really did it. I did something so completely and utterly stupid that a safety conscious person like me would never do. “Honey, I blew up the microwave!” Which is ironic considering that my nickname around the home-front is “Safety Mom”. I’m one of those people who sees the accident, the skinned knee or broken arm, the shattered glass, the burglar coming in through the unchecked and unlocked door before it even happens. And because I can see it happen and do everything within my power to stop it before it starts, my kids have named me “Safety Mom”. But this time, Safety Mom blew up the microwave with my super powers!
Now how could such a safety minded person like me let something like this happen? I was trying to avoid splattering spaghetti sauce all over the inside of the microwave by using a paper plate – that fancy foiled and flammable kind of paper plate that was left over from a recent birthday party. Nice. So now, the whole inside of the microwave is black and melted from the fire and the microwave has moved on to electronic heaven. Note to self – read the back of paper plates with fire hazard warnings next time.
As a result of not having a microwave that has become such a central part of our lives, not to mention a time saver in preparing meals with our busy fast-paced life, I’ve had to go back to doing everything the old fashioned way. Not caveman fire or anything like that, but cooking everything in the oven and on the stove top. Which as you know, takes two days longer than cooking it in the microwave! For lunch today I made my delicious veggie riblets in the oven. What would normally take 3 minutes took 30 minutes. The soup I heated up took 7 minutes with constant stirring instead of 1 1/2 minutes. But you know what? Something was different. The time that it took added something that was missing with the quick fix method. Taste, texture, and the thinking process that occurred with the direct attention. The food was actually better. My veggie riblets were more tender, juicier, and the sauce didn’t burn in the corner of the packet.
There is something to be said about having to wait for things. You know the saying “Fine wine takes time” – it’s true about a lot of things. It’s true about life. We have allowed ourselves to be consumed by a fast paced, fast food culture so much that we have lost some important elements. We do not have the time to wait for things like meals, or success, or paying our dues for a while with no immediate gratification in sight. We don’t want to let things ripen or marinate for too long, we want it now. And because of our rush, we miss out on the best parts of waiting. The Bible talks a lot about waiting. But we never listen to that advice as much as we should.
I’ve had to wait for things I wish would have ripened and matured a decade ago! When it comes to my passion for music, God did not hand me a silver platter when it comes to putting it out there. I’ve had to work very hard for it, pay for it with my own dime, and things have not always happened as quickly or in the manner I had preferred. But one thing I can say is that I’ve learned to never rush God and His plan for my life that is still unfolding. I’ve learned to not put ultimatums or time constraints on Him to “move mountains” for me, or even to move them at all. I’m content with where I’m at, thankful for what grace has been given to me, and every moment I have to continue to wait for answers to my prayers, to my questions, to my dreams, has become a reminder that the final outcome is going to be much better than if I had tried to rush things. When I work on songwriting, I don’t rush the process. Sometimes I don’t finish a song until years later, after I’ve let it marinate for a while and have gone through some experience that has given me a different perspective to help complete the process. It’s like stirring soup on the stovetop at a lower temperature…it keeps the flavor better.
God has brought me through a lot of hard times, trials, and darkness. During a lot of those times, I could hardly stand it to wait on God until it was over. I used to pray “God just get me out of this, take it away, remove it.” But as I have grown through these experiences, I’ve realized that it’s in the “going through”, not “getting out of” that has deepened my relationship with God, and I’m not going to get that result if I cry “uncle!” Coming through to the other side has been the sweetest reward I have ever known. I would not reap wisdom, patience, understanding, faith, strength, or know God as deeply if I didn’t just pray “God, take me through.” If I could wish for anyone anything, it would be to embrace life’s circumstances and trust God, even in the darkness, knowing that He is always there, that He will never leave us or forsake us, and that His greater plan is meant for our good. All the waiting, the silence, the pain and anguish, blood, sweat and tears. It’s all good!
“Oh Sweet Tragedy – anthems from the ashes” is my new project coming out in the near future. These songs were birthed through some dark times, living through broken dreams, and while going through things that made me wait on God, sometimes not even knowing if He was going to answer my cries. I learned to lift up my anthem to Him, even when I felt very alone, afraid, lost and abandoned. Looking back now, I know it was all for my good, and that God was always there, faithful, answering my prayers of wanting to knowing Him more deeply, praying for strength and wisdom and all that other good stuff we pray for when things are going well. Are we willing to pay the price to get those things? Because as any well-trained and accomplished athlete knows, no pain, no gain. You don’t get stronger by taking the easy way out, don’t gain some muscle by only lifting weights until you’ve done 3 sets of 12 reps each. You push through the pain, and as a result, you’re stronger for it. Not to mention, these things take time! You’re not going to become a world class body builder in 3 weeks! It takes time, patience, and determination for any good thing we desire. If you want to know God, you’re going to have to pay a price. His salvation is free, but living the life of His promises will cost you.
So getting back to the blown up microwave….I’ve had to take a little longer preparing meals these days until we replace that thing! But it has reminded me that nothing beats home cooking! Something I love to do anyway, but have become a little too microwave dependent! And even more so, nothing beats God’s plan and timing. He is the God of the impossible and will do what He wants, when He wants, and how He wants. Even if it takes blowing up the microwave of our life to get our attention in order to take us through HIS plan to teach us that.
Safety Mom signing off for now.