I had a friend…We’ll call him “Eddie.”
I met Eddie in the Summer of 1998. I was a theological research student, and he was a CPE Summer intern at MDACC. We got along great, and we made quite a pair. Me, the Baptist Seminarian; and he, the Catholic Seminarian ended up having a great time together. Eddie was proud of his Hispanic heritage, and poked fun at me on many occasions.
One of his favorite jokes was, “Hey, Tim! What is a white man’s salsa?”
I would reply, “I don’t know, tell me.”
To which he responded, “KETCHUP!!! Bwahahahaha!!!”
Well, today I think I had the white man’s mexican food. I’m sure you know what it is. It isn’t bad, no not at all. But then again, it wasn’t all that tasty either. The place was nice. The servers were fairly quick. The food was hot and quite filling. The lunch portion was good, a bit more than you need; and the prices ranged from $5.50 – $5.75.
For Fort Worth, it was a quite a deal.
Again, the food wasn’t bad… It was just bland. Filling, but bland. Nothing to really get excited about. It is that restaurant that goes on your list to go back too, once you’ve hit all the other ones you really liked. It goes on your rotation.
The whole time I was eating it, I was thinking about the fried plantains I had at my buddies house a few years back. Yes, it’s been a couple of years, but I remember the explosion of taste in my mouth just like it was yesterday. I’m think that I remember an involuntary, “Dear God, that is good!” which escaped my mouth in the process of chewing it up.
I’ll let that picture sit with you for a minute. 🙂
Ok, so this event was so good, so tasty, so gloriously wonderful in the midst of friends, that it has come to mythological proportions in my memory!
Man, that was good.
This got me to thinking about a scripture verse.
Matthew 5.13-16 says:
13“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.
14“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
Notice, the words used here to describe those that self-identify as Christian is Salt and Light. These are things that add to the world, not detract. At the end of the section, we see that they symbolize the good things that we do. Things that are so good, that people spontaneously praise God for experiencing them.
Can someone give me a, “THANK YOU, JESUS!!!!”
Here is my point. We are called to be more than just good. We are called to be more than what people refer to as “salt of the earth,” ordinary. We are called to be the biblical “salt of the earth,” beyond ordinary to freakin’ spectacular! Living lives of such extraordinary meaning and impact, that people let out an involuntary, “Dear God, that is sweet!”
While this can seem daunting, it really isn’t. All we have to do is be obedient to our Lord. The hard part is moving beyond the monotonous, homogenized form of existence – into the beautiful life of discernment and obedience that we’ve been called to.