Pressing on While God Does the Shaping


I was feeling ambitious last weekend!  I made homemade pies, well halfway, because I did use canned filling.  I began making a regular old-fashioned pie dough and it went beautifully into my new mini pie pan.  Then I needed to make a gluten free dough due to food allergies.  When you are working with gluten free products for baking, the ingredient which binds the dough together (gluten) is removed and makes the mixture crumbly and difficult to keep together.  I have always struggled with this, but every once in a while I get brave enough to try out a new method.  This recipe called for 1 egg which would act as the binding agent.  So, I decided to let my ambition take over and go for it!

I made both versions of the dough by hand and delighted in feeling the ingredients between my fingers.  I was happy, and peaceful. Even sported my grams apron since pies were one of her favorites to make.  Then it happened…frustration with the gluten free dough.  It was crumbling under the rolling pin.  I added a touch of water and flour for dusting, then began the process again.  I had to re-roll the pie sections over and over because the dough was so fragile and suddenly the fun wanted to go away.

Pressing onward and with several attempts later, the pies were covered and in the oven.  I managed to manipulate the dough just enough that I could get it into the mini pie pan with a few scattered holes.  I took the little sections that broke off and pressed into the pan to cover up them up.  I figured the filling was going to mask any impurities in the dough so I wasn’t too worried.  However, I felt like I needed to get the tops rolled into one fluid piece, because you can’t really hide ugly on the outside of the pie!  In order to accomplish this, I turned on my radio, took a deep breath, and sent a quick nod up to God and Gram in heaven!  Viola! Between the radio and prayer, my body and mind relaxed, frustration eased and I rolled out perfectly smooth pie tops! 

By now you’re wondering where I’m going with this.  Well, as I kept remaking the fragile dough it brought to mind how God had to keep re-making me in my delicate state!  He never gave up, and with His hands He molded and shaped me!  In that, there were periods of struggle and moments of despair sprinkled in between the aha-moments of happy; but look where He has taken me…writing to you about pies!

Enjoy what you make with your hands and when it’s difficult, be happy because God has a lesson in that for you!  Bon appetite!

This post was inspired by Thessalonians 4:11 “and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you.”

How has God shaped and molded you? Share in the comments.

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Press On, Building 429

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The Lemon Pies are the gluten free and I appreciated the pun once it was all said and done. You will notice that I made the venting slits too small on the cherry and too large on the lemon, however it did not change the integrity and they were able to keep their shape!

If you’re the parent of a prodigal…don’t give up!


prodigalDriving home from work yesterday, I flipped over to a  radio station on impulse and the phrase being spoken, which still echoes in my heart, was “If you’re the parent of a prodigal, don’t give up”. Having missed more than half the broadcast, I was hesitant to continue, worried I would not get the gist of what the intended focus was to be.  My heart, on the other hand was leading me in the direction of staying, listening and learning.

Families are complex in themselves, but when a severe trauma is thrown into the mix the possibilities for destruction of the family unit are endless, and the risk of a lost sheep is inevitable.   I have found myself on many sides of this unfortunate equation, from being directly involved to a concerned friend looking on from a distance, and no matter how the stories develop or what the reasons are, the pain and struggle are real and should be considered an extreme loss.

In the parable of the Prodigal (Luke 15:11-32), the focus was the mans son, but who is to say that in our lives, the prodigal can’t also be a spouse, another family member, or even a friend; any Child of God, who has separated themselves from family, those they love, and our loving God.

I have always been impressed with the father in the parable and his commitment to waiting with complete love and respect in his heart for his son’s return.  I believe it is his faith that gives him the strength to do so.  It is his faith, which allows him to welcome his son back into his life with no questions asked; and it is through the need for compassion, they are reunited.

Remaining on the radio station and listening to the last five minutes of the broadcast, meant the world to me.  First, it reminded me that no one is alone in suffering, not only are we held in God’s embrace, there are other’s going through similar circumstances.  Secondly, strained relationships are far more prevalent than ever before and it is a fast growing concern for any family, broken or not.  And lastly, I learned that it is OK to be in a state of unrest, frustration, sadness, and despair when grieving the loss of a prodigal as long as we know what to do with those emotions.

One of the callers on the broadcast suggested simply praying “Help me God”.  Other suggestions are “Heal his/her heart”, or “Please love them as I love them”.

Prayer, an intimate conversation with God, can be a replacement for picking up the phone and setting yourself up for the rejection that is most likely on the other end.  When that urge hits to reach out to your prodigal and you are not sure if it is the right thing to do…pray and let God lead.

In the meantime, if you need to fill an empty space, imagine that all of the energy which goes into the worry, frustration, and sadness, will, in God’s time, be transformed into a beautiful reunion, filled with compassion, love, understanding, and the blessings of God.

For anyone suffering from this loss, please know that you are being lifted in prayer by all others who are waiting, wondering and hoping for their returning prodigal.  If you have a similar story and would like to share, please lift other’s up by commenting.

Many Blessings to All,

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

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Luke 15:11-32

Welcome Home, Prodigal Child of God