Within every family there are things that come to be routine. Holiday traditions, television programs as well as customary foods. Our growing family was no exception. On nights when your day had been just a tad more than you could handle, we were famous for one pot wonders. Quick cook, quick clean up. Chicken and rice was one of those recipes and the children did and still do truly enjoy it.
When my oldest was around 16 and the other two much smaller, I went to work full time and my husband was home with them more at night that I was. He made supper, seen to homework, and generally kept things running smoothly. On the night of our tale He created a chicken and rice dish that was only slightly different than usual. He made chicken and rice and peas. Instead of just fluffy white rice that had been cooked in chicken broth mixed with chunks of chicken recently removed from the bone, he had added a package of tiny frozen green peas. These are so small that the minute they arrive in the warm inviting rice they are they are ready to be eaten pretty quickly with out much fuss.
The table was set and the food dished up. The little ones were ready to devour the meal. Yet the oldest child sat and stared. You would have thought there was some unidentifiable glob before her. She didn’t even move for a few minutes until someone prodded her to eat up. She lifted the fork and moved toward the plate in a fashion that made you believe the thought it might try and escape. The she carefully began to dissect the supper into to sections: chicken with rice & peas. “What are you doing?” both parents asked simultaneously. “I don’t like peas in it. We have never eaten peas in it. I don’t like it.” she replied all the while working on this mini-autopsy. I began to try and explain that she liked all three components and that it should not be a big deal, but she was not going to be persuaded.
Every part she sectioned off was eaten and when she was either too weary from all the work or full she pushed the plate back slightly. We excused her from the table and she took the plate away.
A few weeks later my husband was again on meal duty. He considered our regular chicken and rice quick meal, but remembered the dismembering fiasco of last time. So, he resigned himself to create something better. Something that hopefully would not end up in frustration for the cook.
The table was set and everyone gathered as he began to bring the food to the table. One nice platter of baked chicken, one steaming hot bowl of fluffy rice and (you guessed it) a side dish of perfect little green peas. I smiled at him. “You did not like chicken and rice with peas before,” he announced to my oldest child, “so I made chicken, rice, and peas.” Those kids ate like they had never eaten those three foods in their lives, especially Miss Finicky.
We laugh about this pretty regularly even though it happened so long ago. And as I was preparing to share it with you I began to think. Do I thank God for the things that He gives me or do I try and decide how I really just do not like it that way? While I waste time dividing up the precious blessings to make them more like I think they ought to be, I am acting like a strong willed child. Maybe it is time to grow up a bit and be thankful for what the people, talents and things that God has blessed me with. Whether it comes like I expect it or not, He has His purpose.
Taste and see that the Lord (our God) is good; and How blessed (fortunate, prosperous, and favored by God) is the man who takes refuge in Him.
Psalm 34:8 (AMP)