A Season for Stretching

I love watching cooking videos on Facebook. I spend hours watching them. Cooking has always been a relaxing hobby for me. I love to chop the vegetables, debone the chicken, season to perfection, and wait anxiously for the finished product. I love the smells as they permeate the kitchen.
LaRaye often barks at me because I love to cook with onion and garlic–two ingredients she cannot stand. Regardless of the complaint, she always praises the food as she picks out the bits she doesn’t like.
As I was scrolling through Facebook the other day, I came upon a cooking video teaching Facebookers how to make pasta. Honestly, I’ve always wanted to try to make pasta, but I don’t have a pasta maker. I know you can do it by hand, but, at this point in my life, that’s a no for me.
I’m fascinated by the fact that a clump of dough can be stretched and stretched so thin that it makes up to six feet of pasta. Hand-making pasta is more artisan and time-consuming, so, for convenience, chefs often use a pasta maker. He or she inserts the pasta into the machine which is then hand cranked. Pasta is fed through the machine, stretching it out thinner and thinner.
The pasta is then formed into Farfalle, macaroni, spaghetti, ravioli, etc. Regardless of what type of pasta is made, with a little sauce and garlic bread, it’s delicious!
Well, as I was watching the chef stretch the pasta, I began to reflect on my current life situation. The past six months have been very hard–terrifically challenging. With six babies, an unreliable job, school, and little-to-no money, things can get stressful. Since I graduate on December 16, we have spent the last several months in a spiritual battle, armed with much prayer and fasting, yet now, with only two months left in our apartment, we have no word from God on what he wants us to do come January 31. We trust that God will provide a way for us, no matter the path and that He will reveal our next move in His timing. Still, the wait is incredibly…weighty.
I know, I know. I’ve heard it time and again. I’ve got to “have a plan.” I have “six children to take care of, and they should be #1 on my list.” “God helps those who help themselves.” Whatever phrase you can think of, I’ve heard it; in my heart, I know and believe differently.
I am waiting on God. Like that pasta, my faith is being stretched. I do want to worry about my kids. I want to plan. I want to know what we are going to do. I’m not unaware of my temptation to “figure it out.” What most people don’t understand is that God doesn’t want you to figure things out or even have a plan until He reveals it to you. God wants to stretch your faith until it is super thin. He wants people he can shape into beautiful creations who glorify his holy name.
I’m not perfect; I’m willing. I don’t care that people are puzzled by me. Yes, I want comfort and financial assurance. Yes, I want nice things for my kids. But, I’m more concerned that they know God. So, I’m thankful for this season in my life. My children will be better for it because they witnessed their father pouring his heart out to God. My kids see their mother bending in humility to God and trusting that He will give her strength to make it through one more day.
I’m more than ready for God to answer me and send us on a mission where ever he needs us. I’m ready and waiting, but more than that I’m thankful for this season of faith-stretching. I am ready to be shaped into a butterfly…to bring honor to my Fathers name.

Here’s a little lagniappe for ya: Farfalle means Butterfly in Italian.


– J. Philip Harris

“…because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.” –Hebrews 12:6 NIV

Three sets of twins in one family

Photo taken by Chris Granger

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