I was fighting a sweet tooth and since I’d made brownies the week before, Rice Krispies Treats™ seemed like a brilliant alternative. Besides, they’re basically instant gratification because they require only minutes to prep.
After spreading the gooey goodness of Rice Krispies® cereal and buttery marshmallows in my cake pan, I reached into the cabinet for some sprinkles. Deliciousness is 90% preparation and 10% presentation, right? Maybe the percentages depend on the person, but I always like to make my desserts pretty.
I started shaking the red dispenser, but something looked off. The red wasn’t red enough. It was a deeper burgundy color.
And then I read the label. Chili Powder.
I was doctoring my delicious treats with chili powder, not sugar cookie sprinkles.
When we rush toward gratification
I was in such a hurry to add the finishing touches that I didn’t read the label or take time to do a two-second inspection. If I had, it would have been obvious that the chili powder container didn’t look like sugar sprinkles.
Sometimes, we act the same with life. We’re in such a rush to get to the next phase of our lives that we grab what looks like the “real thing,” only to be disappointed later.
For example, have any of these If Onlys ever crossed your mind?
- If only I could just finish school
- If only I could meet the right guy
- If only I could make the team
- If only I could go on that trip
- If only …
The problem is that when we wish for instant gratification to our desires, we often miss out on the blessings of right now and mess up God’s recipe to provide in the best way.
When to stop and read the label
Like it or not, life doesn’t come with a label. Can you imagine what ours would say if it did?
- Caution: Do not converse with prior to coffee consumption.
- Directions: Dose regularly with sunshine for optimum results.
- Warning: Introvert requires good books and quiet time to recharge properly.
What would yours say? In all seriousness, though, even if we had labels, they would have one problem: They would be about us.
Instead, we have something better. God’s Word directs our focus off ourselves and toward Him and His plan.
If you find yourself wanting to rush ahead, open a copy of the Bible and meditate on truths like these:
- Jeremiah 29:11-12: “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you.” (ESV)
- Psalm 34:8-10: “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him! Oh, fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him have no lack! The young lions suffer want and hunger; but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.” (ESV)
- Philippians 4:4-7: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (ESV)
How to Move Past Mess-Ups
Maybe you’re thinking, “But, Kristen, I’ve already grabbed the chili powder.”
I hear you. So have I. Plenty of times. But you know what? Chili powder on Rice Krispies Treats™ wasn’t a total fiasco. A gentle sprinkling was almost unnoticeable, and I caught the problem before I doused the whole pan.
No matter how big you think your mess is, God’s grace can redeem it. His Word says, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9a ESV).
Bring your mess to God and be honest with him about it. Ask him to put his grace to work in your weakness and bring about good through the mistakes. He will.
Rice Krispies®, Chili Powder, and Rushing Ahead – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)