We were on vacation, and Sarah had found the restaurant using one of them hip-trendy restaurant-finder Apps. It was ranked #1 in the area, so we knew anything on the menu was going to knock it out of the park. As we looked over the choices, we realized the reason it was so highly ranked was probably because they served just about everything you could imagine. Among the choices, there were several options I’d never heard of. Always the adventurous type, I decided to take a chance:
Me: Hmm, so what is this “Scrapple”?
Waitress: Well, you know how hotdogs are made out of the leftovers of meat? Scrapple is made out of the scraps leftover after hotdogs are made. Absolutely nothing goes to waste. Then they add some cornmeal, and season it up. I grew up eating it.
Me: Sounds great. I’ll take some.
My stomach an hour later: (shaking it’s fist at me) Whhhyyyyyyy!!!!!????
You know what would’ve been great for breakfast that morning? Ham. Yeah, ham definitely would’ve been awesome. I think God knew that as a people, we’d become more and more okay with serving our “lastfruits” not only as an item for breakfast, but as our worship and sacrifice to Him. We have the commitments we’ve made with each day, whether work or home or play, and somewhere in between all the important stuff, if we really love him, we’ll carve out a few minutes for a devotional or Bible reading.
We’ll stay out/up late Saturday night doing whatever we want, make plans for Sunday afternoon, and feel great about shoving the family in the van – everyone too tired to know exactly what’s going on. Blurry eyed, we’ll make it through service, check “Sabbath” off our list, and make it to lunch/etc. just in time.
Or the one I’m most guilty of, we’ll arrange our finances. Make commitments for a lifestyle that fits the American Dream in our context, and with whatever’s left we’ll try to get close to 10%….or something…to give as our offering to God.
I say all of this not as a pastor trying to bring guilt on other church-goers, but as a fellow scrapple-server, realizing I want to give God ham. (I realize the irony in serving God what was traditionally an “unclean animal”…oh well.) I want to give God the first moments of my day, when my brain is firing well. I want to give God my focus and energy as if communion with the body of Christ at the banquet table of His Word is the most important aspect of my Sabbath. I want to give to God sacrificially, making choices to deny myself bits of “The American Dream”, so that I can experience the blessings of being completely yielded to Him.
But instead so many times I offer him my scrapple. I give to him whatever I’ve got left after I’ve cut out the bits and pieces I really needed for other things. I’m so incredibly thankful for His grace, and the smile on His face. As he takes the plate from me, and looks down at what I offer. He loves what I’ve given. He eats my scrapple. He gently reminds me of the pattern He set, offering the very best to us. He hasn’t left the table…but waits with a loving smile, expectantly….(Proverbs 3:9)