It’s baaaaaaaack. Hello again, PVS.
What, you may ask, is PVS? Why of course, it’s Polar Vortex Syndrome…
When we all feel cranky and mean because the temperature outside is negative gagillion.
When all we want to do is go and hide under the covers for many many days at a time.
When we all feel like shoveling out the backyard just so we can see some grass, for cryin out loud.
When we realize it’s been months since we’ve been able to shed our coats and venture outside.
In spite of it all, though, we keep on keeping on.
And I got together with my women’s Bible study group–the ones who keep me going in spite of all of the yuck. This week we talked about the mysteries of God–those points of theology beyond our comprehension, like the Trinity or the incarnation, Jesus becoming flesh. But we also touched on those mysteries of human existence–why a good God allows bad things to happen.
When I became a Lutheran about 24 years ago, one thing I learned to love about Luther’s theology was his insistence that reason plays a part in faith, but that reason ultimately bows to faith when there are questions beyond our understanding.
A mystery we talked about in Bible study was the idea of God’s presence with us. God promises this–His constant presence, His companionship. We can’t see or touch or feel His presence, but we trust anyhow.
That’s what the eternal flame in our churches represents. This photo shows the eternal flame–really just a burning candle in a red glass vase–in our church burning on a Wednesday evening. It shows that we trust God is there for us whenever and wherever we need Him. We don’t know how this can be, but we trust just the same. God’s story of salvation shows that God eagerly wants to be with us, in fact, so much so that instead of our reaching up to God, God chose to come down to us as an infant in a manger.
And that is very good news.
Some other really good news is a great-tasting vegetable. Lately, I must admit, I’ve been on a non-healthy eating jag. It’s not good. I can blame the endless winter. I can blame stress. But what I really need to blame is myself and my lack of willpower.
But here Rhonda Z. gives us a delicious and nutritious option for serving cooked carrots.
And Rhonda not only contributed this recipe, but also went the extra mile and ordered the Priester’s red pepper jelly for us! Wow–was that great!
Here’s the jar of Priester’s jelly. I looked on the back of the jar and it appears to be from Alabama. Well, those Alabamans sure know how to make carrots taste great. That’s for sure. This dish would be perfect for a holiday meal. It’s enough “specialness” to add to a fancy meal without a lot of fuss–my kind of dish!
Here the carrots are bubbling away in chicken broth.
And here they are with little red pepper specks, showing the red pepper jelly. Great!
Rhonda really did a tremendous job with VBS and organizing our Trivia Night in this past year. Her positive energy and great ideas amaze me. A petting zoo at VBS? Sure! A movie theater popcorn machine at Trivia Night? Yep! And her great ideas with great follow-through mean that the events were really spectacular. So thank you Rhonda!