Reports of Strange Kitchen Phenomena! (Angel in the Kitchen)

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Scientist and science fiction novelist Arthur C. Clarke once wrote, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” The author used this astute observation as a plot device in 2001: A Space Odyssey (both the novel and the movie). But what exactly constitutes “sufficiently advanced” tech? We imagine it’s practically anything beyond human knowledge.

In 2001: A Space Odyssey, astronaut and scientist Dave Bowman witnessed strange things far beyond his limited understanding.

But we all have different life experiences; and as a result, what we know may not be what you know. For instance, there are things going on in our kitchen that we can’t quite understand. Seemingly magical changes are taking place before our very eyes; processes as ancient as time itself, and yet beyond our limited knowledge.

Join us now, as we journey into the deepest recesses of the kitchen, and plumb the depths of the curious and arcane. Keep a firm grip on both your flashlight and your sanity, for we shall encounter the unexplainable, the unimaginable, perhaps even … the unspeakable!

Actually, we’re more likely to encounter the unspeakable in the laundry room, when we take a load of clothes from the dryer. Yes, by the Rings of Saturn, crouching atop the pile of sheets and towels are … (Oh, the horror! Dare we say it?) some of our unmentionables!

Are you SURE this is the way to the kitchen?

Ahem, on to the kitchen, brave heart.

There … in the cabinet … can you see it?!?! Dear Lord, it’s a box of … Jell-O! And next to it — Gasp! — baking powder! What manner of witchcraft be lurking in yon cupboard?

Have you ever noticed the strange sorcery that takes place when boiling water is added to gelatin? Out of sight within the dark regions of the refrigerator, the steaming liquid cools, and slowly transforms into a semi-solid jiggling mass of allegedly edible dessert … with a fruity flavor that is not its own! Okay, we know it’s not magic, but rather science. We also realize we can google the chemistry behind gelatin, but…. Seriously, we don’t really care, because we already know what we need to know: Jell-O works every time. Like magic! We’re not sure how, but we have confidence that mixing a little powder and H2O produces Jell-O! Onward!

Dost thou understand what gibbering madness cries out for baking powder to be added to the cauldron in which thou mixeth a batch of brownies? What dost the baking powder actually do? For that matter, precisely what is baking powder? We actually know this one. Yet, many cooks don’t. They simply follow the age-old wisdom of the cookbook. They may not understand all the hows, whys and wherefores, but these people have been promised good results by a chef much wiser than them, and they have faith that any given recipe will work!

Call it kitchen faith!

The reason things work in the kitchen is because they are backed by natural laws. We trust in these natural laws — even though we may not understand all the principles behind them. And we know it’s not magic, but rather an as-yet-unlearned part of the puzzle revealing life’s great mysteries. Interestingly, not too many seem bothered by not knowing the reasons behind all the intricate workings within the average kitchen. They’re too busy enjoying all the tasty things produced within the kitchen!

Regarding the spiritual realm, most of us have far more questions than answers. There are Biblical principles, the reasons for which we may not know or fully understand. Furthermore, God has promised things that seem impossible. He can take our mistakes and use our circumstances to make our lives nicely “gel” into something wonderful. How does He do it? Why does He do it? Do we really need to know in order to enjoy His blessings? “Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5 NLT)

Because we don’t always “get it”, the spiritual realm can sometimes feel a little like The Twilight Zone.

Most of the answers are in His Holy Word, but there will always be a little mystery to His divine workings. Some things we just won’t know for sure until we go home to spend eternity with our Heavenly Father. But, like all the cooks who have kitchen faith, we should have faith in God’s promises and precepts. We may not be able to see and understand the intricacies behind them, but we should realize they are not “magic”; but rather truths backed by God’s divine laws and supernatural principles.

You don’t need to know or understand every single truth in the Bible in order to start enjoying the blessings of a life spent with God. You can accept salvation without knowing when Christ wll return and whether or not it will be before or after what theologians call The Great Tribulation. You can have faith in God’s promises without knowing all the hows, whys, and wherefores! Simply follow the age-old wisdom of the spiritual cookbook (the Word of God). Trust what it says, and you’ll have good results — because the “Master Chef,” who is much wiser than any of us, has promised that all His “recipes” will work!

“‘My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,’ says the LORD. ‘And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.'” (Isaiah 55:8 NLT)

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Beware of the Blob! (Angel in the Kitchen)

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Long after midnight, while watching a creepy classic on the late late movie, we see it: a scene so hideous in its simple truth, so horrifying that— We shudder and try to look away, but it’s too late; and now, we may never be able to fully purge the sickening image from our fevered brains!

The scene: in a dimly-lit kitchen a woman is removing what appears to be an ordinary cookie sheet from her oven. Unbeknownst to her, however, a strange alien substance has covered the cookie sheet … an evil, slimy film that’s been lurking there … awaiting the right moment to strike.

The nasty stuff begins to grow … rising, taking on a ghoulish shape. It’s grey and gooey, sticky and scarier than anything we’ve seen before!

Wait a minute, we cry in unison. Are we watching a repeat of The Blob with Steve McQueen? Remember that 1958 sci-fi flick? Hapless viewers were warned by the movie’s opening theme song, “Beware of the blob! It creeps; And leaps, and glides and slides; Across the floor; Right through the door; And all around the wall — A splotch, a blotch! Be careful of the blob!” Corny? Hey, watch it! The great pop composer Burt Bacharach wrote those crazy lyrics!

All this aside, we were absolutely wrong. Guess our minds wandered a moment, and we hadn’t realized we were now watching a commercial for Pam Cooking Spray. You know, the stuff that keeps food from sticking to pots, pans and baking surfaces.

Apparently, the lady in the commercial had forgotten to spray on the Pam, and now the thin residue of old food, which clung tenaciously to her cookie sheet, was rising up to expose her mistake. “I am the ghost of meals past,” it proclaims, ready to haunt your tastebuds with the disgusting flavors of meals long gone but not quite forgotten.

Imagine, a funky residue of spinach quiche invading the taste of your chocolate chip cookies! Nothing ruins the enjoyment of a good cookie more than something nasty-tasting mingling with the butter and brown sugar! Yuck!

And, heh, life is like a cookie sheet. No, really! In life, we make mistakes; we encounter conflicts and disappointments; and in our relationships we experience, at one time or another, hurts, misunderstandings, and even betrayals. Sometimes the pain and disillusionment of the past lingers on. It sticks to us like that gooey glob in the Pam commercial! We think we’ve moved on, but a thin film of nasty experiences sticks to our hearts. It’s those memories that leave a “bad taste” in our mouths — months, even years, later. These “ghosts” can continue to haunt us, with emotional “residue” that can contaminate fresh relationships and new experiences, preventing us from fully tasting all the good things in life!

Why do bad things seem to stick, even long after we “forgive and forget”? Well, with God, forgiveness and acceptance are instant. The Bible states, “God is faithful and reliable. If we confess our sins, He forgives them and cleanses us from everything we’ve done wrong.” (1 John 1:9 GOD’S WORD)

There’s no residue of the past, because nothing sticks! The cookie sheet of our lives is left clean as a whistle! And our loving, merciful Heavenly Father does not bring up the past to mess up the “flavor” of our present. Instead, He casts “all our sins into the depths of the sea.” (Micah 7:19 Jubilee Bible). In other words, He scours the “pan” and then flushes the residue down the drain!

Alas, if only people could do the same! Being weak and fallen creatures (say “humans”), we tend to cling to our hurts and disappointments. This partly stems from self-righteousness. Ouch! We all make mistakes, and we’ve all let someone down in the past. But we refuse to consider the old proverb, “To err is human, to forgive divine!” So we need to give those who hurt us a break. After all, they’re only human! Spray on the PAM of love and forgiveness! “For Love covers a multitude of sins.” (1 Peter 4:8 NLT)

We need to cut ourselves some slack, too. Some emotional wounds do take time to heal. And yet, even after forgiving ourselves and others — and moving forward — we may still feel some emotional residue. But that’s where God comes into the picture! He is like spiritual PAM!

As we grow closer to God, we become more like Him. We begin to see things the way He sees them, and we begin to respond the way God would respond. As we mature in the Lord, we are better able to overcome hurts and disappointments. We get better at forgiving, and better at going through life without having every insult and injury stick to us!

We can only truly forgive and move forward when we include God in the process. So, be honest with your Heavenly Father. Present your hurts to Him in prayer. “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NLT) Ask Him to scrape away any emotional residue, to give you a divine perspective, and cover you with His love!

A little spiritual PAM will keep you free from those ugly emotional blobs that come creeping and crawling — and which try to cling to the heart. Don’t get stuck! Be free! Free from being haunted by the ghosts of past mistakes, hurts, and disappointments. Free to taste the good things God has prepared for you. (Ephesians 2:10)

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