I discovered an interesting spiritual illustration in my kitchen cupboard. The label of my ADOLPH’S Meat Tenderizer carries an extraordinary promise: Turns commonplace cuts into gourmet products!
You know it, Lord, I’m just a commonplace cut, but I’d sure like to be a gourmet product fit for the Master’s use. How can that happen? I must follow five simple steps:
- Moisten all surfaces. The loving dealings of God in my life may produce tears. The hurts of life are real and painful. My heart first needs to be moistened—on ALL surfaces. OK, Lord, top to bottom, every part of my life is available to You. I hold nothing back.
- Sprinkle tenderizer generously. The HOLY SPIRIT is my Tenderizer. He is at work in my life. He transforms my heart of stone into a tender heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26, 27). He liberally sprinkles God’s promises on my hurting heart to encourage me and lift me up. Lord, help me accept Your loving process for my good.
- Pierce deeply with a fork at ½ inch intervals. Pain, affliction, and sorrow have a redemptive purpose in my life. My tough, stubborn will needs to be broken, but God doesn’t break my spirit. He loves me and desires to bring out His best in me. Sometimes trouble seems to invade all areas of my life at once. Every ½ inch of my world cries out for relief! Nevertheless, I open even the deepest areas of my life to You, Lord.
- Marinate. God’s work in my heart takes time. Oh, Lord, waiting is so hard! I’m in such a hurry to get out of my difficulty, but my Heavenly Father knows I need time to accept what He is doing in me. Give me patience, Lord, while You marinate me.
- Bake, broil, barbecue, roast, or microwave immediately. I cry, “Enough already! Surely I don’t need more heat!” But my Lord must apply heat to separate my imperfections from the pure gold. The fire of affliction is the refiner’s fire. My oven experience is essential. When God’s time is just right, when I have learned the lessons He has been trying to teach me, He will deliver me from the oven of my affliction in His own way.
The result of this painful process? I will be a gourmet product fit for my King! I will have a tender, sensitive, responsive heart toward my Lord—a heart that joyfully, quickly, genuinely responds to Him with a “Yes, Lord, YES!”
The label on my jar of Meat Tenderizer says 100% Natural. But God’s spiritual process is 100% Supernatural. Man can’t duplicate it; only the Holy Spirit can prepare my heart to please God.
Recently, the ingredients in my new jar of Meat Tenderizer have been modified. The label now adds: NO MSG. Monosodium Glutamate was found to be injurious to our health. In God’s process of maturing me through trials, the Holy Spirit is the only active ingredient—perfectly pure and always working for my good.# End