The task given to entrants for the Royal Mail’s Young Letter Writer of the Year contest was to write a letter to their Hero. Ursula Grover won with a letter which reflected her enjoyment of rhubarb. “I think you are extremely clever to have invented such a scrumptious recipe! I make it every Sunday because I LOVE it!!” she wrote. “When you eat it the taste of rhubarb comes zooming into your mouth and you feel absolutely refreshed. I am really lucky because my next door neighbours grow rhubarb and give some to me!”
Ursula’s letter doesn’t tell us which way of serving rhubarb gives her so much pleasure. But it does reveal an appreciation of what it’s so easy to take for granted: the wisdom of the one who worked out the best way of putting together the ingredients which make up her favourite pudding. And it isn’t just that she knows how to enjoy it, she’s learnt to make it for herself.
Our lives are made up of a wide variety of ingredients and we all have our own idea of the best recipe. When Jesus was challenged to come up with his, he offered one based around the commandments to love God and each other. But very few of his contemporaries seemed grateful for his suggestions about how to put a life together. On the first Palm Sunday some shouted and cheered but the moment soon passed. Events later that same week suggested a very different reaction.
We too sometimes turn our backs on new possibilities in our lives and on alternative ideas about how to blend the variety of our opportunities and experiences into a whole. But if sometimes we get the balance right and the resulting cuisine puts a “zoom” into our hearts, we may wish to say thank you. Perhaps the most appropriate expression of gratitude is continuing to go by the recipe of the one who gave us the ingredients.
Read: One of the teachers of the law ….asked: “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one” answered Jesus, “is this: `Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: `Love your neighbour as yourself”
Rejoice: in the simple things that give me pleasure.
Reflect: Are there any of the ingredients God’s given me for my life I’m not using fully?
Remember: God doesn’t just provide the recipes and the ingredients, he helps us with the cooking!
Resolve: to show my gratitude to God for his part in my life by sticking to his recipe for it.