Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Day 49- A Noodle First

Today I went to Birmingham to see a young lady that has been in the hospital for about a week now with high fever and they haven’t found out what’s wrong with her.  She is in the first grade and would love for you to pray for her.

Birmingham seemed like a good place for a "first."  Of course, driving there and back in a day does not leave a lot of time for a “first.”  I was talking to my sweet and wonderful wife on the phone and discussing what I might do today. She started looking up things on the Internet and offering ideas.  In that discussion, she asked me if I had ever been to a noodle house.  No, says I, a noodle house would be a “first.”  I was not sure what it was.  Laura explains it’s an Asian restaurant that serves noodles and you can get them to put various and sundry things in the noodles.

After visiting at the hospital, I pull out the phone and type noodles in the navigation app I have and two noodle houses come up.  I pick the one that is closest to where I am and off I go to eat noodles.  Noodles are not my favorite food, but they can be pretty good depending on what’s on and in them.  I went to a noodle house for a “first” today.

It turns out that the one I picked was not as “noodley”of a house as I expected. They had Italian dishes and American dishes that I’ve had many times. In the spirit of a“first,” I did not order the lobster stuffed ravioli or the lasagna. I ordered some Lo Mein noodles with various things (mushrooms, onions, etc.) in them. When I ordered, the lady asked if I would like anything else in the noodles like beef, chicken, or shrimp (Laura said this is what noodle houses do, so I was feeling better about my noodle house choice). “Shrimp,” I immediately exclaim! Then I pay and we both look at each other and I ask, “OK, what happens now?” I’m at a counter ordering and it’s unclear what the next step is. She says to take this number that she gives me and go sit at a table and they’ll bring the food to me; a lot like Hardees. It’s a little disconcerting when you don’t know how a restaurant works- where do I order, who do I pay, do I pick up my own dishes or does someone else do that. This restaurant raised these kinds of questions for me. I actually loitered around the front for a few minutes trying to decide if I should be seated or go to the counter in the back.

The noodles were delicious. Thank you Laura for a great tip for a“first.” Not exactly living on the ragged edge of adventure, but it was something a bit new and different.

I thought the long things were chop sticks, but turned out to be bread sticks

 There are many things I don’t do well and a few that I can do decently. One of the things that Laura says I do well is segue.  To segue is to transition from one thing to another smoothly and without interruption.  If I hear a joke or a good story, I can usually find a way to work it into a sermon and segue from that to my main point.  Often in these posts, I will use my “first” to make some sort of spiritual application- I’ll segue into something to do with my/our relationship with Jesus.  That was not really my intention when I started this blog, but it just sort of seemed natural for me to do that.

 So, how do I segue from eating at a noodle restaurant into something to do with our relationship to the Lord? See how you like this one.

So, as I was eating my noodles I was reminded of a sermon I had been listening to about asking an important question.  The question is this, “Given my past experiences, my present circumstances, and my future hopes and dreams, what is the wise thing to do?” It occurred to me that we need to use our noodles (here’s the segue and the appropriate place to groan) to think about life from God’s perspective.  Think about how many regrets we would avoid by simply asking that question. I can think of many things that I would have experienced but I missed because I did not ask that question.  It’s been really helpful for me to ask that question. I sometimes ask what is the loving thing to do or what is the “Christian” thing to do, but to ask what is the wise thing to do is very enlightening.  Simply asking that question can bring a lot of clarity to my thinking about decisions relating to money, time, parenting, being a husband, the language I choose to use, etc.  You are free to try the question for yourself this week!

Attempting to use the old noodle for the abundant life


3 things I thank God for today

1. My 6 year old friend feels better and her fever is lower today

2. The question “Given my past experiences, my present circumstances, and my future hopes and dreams, what is the wise thing to do?”

3. The privilege to bring gifts from the church family to my 6 year old friend

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