"Whole" - 1) containing all components; 2) not divided or disjoined; 3) sound and healthy; 4) constituting the full amount; 5) a complete entity.
What have I learned this week about the "wholeness" Jesus offers as His gift?
How will I respond to Jesus' gift of "wholeness" in my life?
"At one time you all had your backs turned to God, thinking rebellious thoughts of Him…But now, by giving Himself completely at the cross, actually dying for you, Christ brought you over to God's side and put your lives together, whole."
Colossians 1: 22, The Message
I love to cook. It was something I learned from my mother (an excellent cook!) when I was quite young. So whenever I go to a bookstore, I always head toward the sign, "Cookbooks."
It seems that a recent trend has been to publish cookbooks about "comfort" food - the type of food you eat when you need solace. For me, the pinnacle of "comfort" food is my mother's homemade applesauce. It's the best. As a kid, when I didn't feel well, my mother would pour her fresh applesauce over a piece of toast soaked in warm milk. Delicious! Or we would, for a treat, heat up the applesauce and put a full ladle or two over a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Absolutely yummy. And for a quick, pick-me-up, Mom's applesauce with cottage cheese couldn't be beat.
My friends would always ask me, "What does your mother do to her applesauce? What's in it? It's different. It's thicker. It's better than any other applesauce I have ever eaten."
Well, one day, I decided I would, under the guidance of my mother, make applesauce. I got everything on the counter that I needed and with a peeler in hand began to whittle the skin off my apples. All of a sudden my mother shouted, "Stop! You can't do that! Don't peel the apples."
There it was. The big secret to the applesauce. You use all the apple except the core - not just some piece without skin. My mom cooked the entire apple; put the whole apple into the sieve grinder and with her special touch and flavorings - out came the world's best applesauce. (In my opinion!)
God's work in our lives is a lot like my mother's applesauce - it's about "wholeness." It is about taking all of us - the "whole imperfect works" and with His touch repairing the blemishes and bruises that affect us.
Not long ago, I found this poem by Mary Caroline Richards. It is her reflection on the path God has for us in His work to bring wholeness to our lives:
"To be perfect
Even as your Father in Heaven
How, O God, am I to understand,
Perfect and pure in heart?
What means pure?
Pure apple juice!
I begin to sense a clue.
Pure apple juice is made
from the whole apple;
bruises, blemish, skin, core -
the whole imperfect works.
Pure apple juice is not
Bruises, blemishes, skin and core.
To be perfect is to be
whole, a paradox
Even as our Father in Heaven…"
It is my prayer that God's wholeness will be felt in your life today. "So let's walk right up to Jesus and get what he is so ready to give. Take the mercy, accept the help" (Hebrews 4: 16, The Message).
Dorothy Valcàrcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
P.S. My book, When A Woman Meets Jesus, is now available wherever books are sold and on the internet at www.amazon.com, Christianbook.com, or by calling toll-free, 1-800-Christian. You can also go to www.whenawomanmeetsjesus.com and purchase the book through Paypal for $10.00.
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