A couple of weeks back I made a luscious tropical cake, filled with pineapple, coconut, and lime. I took it to an event and watched my friends dive in with some lovely compliments after-the-fact.
I was especially pleased because this was a new (made up) recipe.
One of the ladies, however, turned up her nose at it. She said, “It looks good, but I’m not a fan of coconut, so no thanks.”
No problem. I certainly understood that. I’m a super picky eater and turn my nose up at a lot of things.
I continued to hand out cake slices to those who wanted them and before long the lady headed my way. She offered a little shrug and said, “You know what? I think I’ll try it.”
After making sure she didn’t actually have a coconut allergy (she didn’t) I gave her a slice.
And guess what?
She loved it. I’m here to tell you, she really, really loved it.
I wish I’d had my camera handy to snap a picture of her face while eating it. Turns out, she does like coconut after all, at least toasted coconut. And it showed in her countenance as she chowed down on that yummy cake.
I understand this woman well. In many ways, I am her.
There are many things I don’t like.
Take dishes, for instance. As a baker, I can mess up my kitchen repeatedly. Bowls, spoons, silicone spatulas, baking dishes, cookie sheets, cake pans. . .you name it, I dirty it up. And, at the end of the day, I’m faced with a fiasco.
But I don’t like doing dishes.
And I don’t like sweeping and mopping the floor, either. But, guess what? I have three dogs. If I go more than a couple of days I could knit a sweater with the dog hair on the floor.
I don’t like doing laundry, either.
Or paying bills.
Or doing my taxes.
Or having hard conversations.
Or editing my books. (Ahem.)
Yes, there are (literally) zillions of things I don’t like to do. But, guess what?
I Do Them Anyway.
I have no choice, really. If I don’t wash dishes, I can’t bake any new treats the following day. If I don’t do laundry, I have no clean clothes to wear. If I don’t pay my electric bill, I sit in the dark (and the south Texas heat).
Life is filled with things we don’t like to do, but we honor God when we take care of those menial tasks. It brings joy to His heart when we. . .
And you know that? Those things we say we don’t like? They can actually become enjoyable to us. Buzzing around the kitchen, whipping it into shape? It’s fun if you turn on some worship music and sing your heart out.
Sweeping up after the dogs is easier with a song in your heart, too. So is laundry.
I haven’t quite figured out how to sing while paying bills, but maybe that day will come.
Here’s my point:
You can learn to love the things you say you can’t stand.
Do the Hard Things.
Jesus did the hardest thing of all. He gave His life so that we could spend eternity with Him.
Suddenly those dirty dishes aren’t looking like such a big challenge, right? And they look even easier when you remember who you’re working for!
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people. Remember that the Lord will give you as a reward what he has kept for his people. For Christ is the real Master you serve.
Colossians 3:23-24 GNT
Everything you do is for the Lord, not for man. When you think of it like that, even the most menial task (like cleaning toilets, for instance) becomes an act of service to the king of Kings.
And that mentality, my friend, will change absolutely everything.
I don’t always feel like it, Lord, but I’ll do it anyway. Those things I’ve been pushing aside. . .I’ll take care of them. I might need a little nudge, but I’ll do my best. Thank You for doing the hardest thing of all. . .dying on the cross for me. You did the hard thing so that I wouldn’t have to. I’m eternally grateful. Amen.