Vision at times needs to Slow Cook

by Poly Rouse

For the past month we have had on stage some visual aids to assist us in connection to Vision.  A microwave, a Big Green Egg and a picture of a Semi-Truck.  Our theme: For the Long Haul!  So, what do these visual aids remind us to consider?

Microwave:  They are great to have.  When they first came out a few decades ago it was the “hottest” item to have in a modern kitchen.  The thought that you could have a complete meal in just a few minutes was revolutionizing.  But the end result, even though it was hot, it may not contain the best flavor to enjoy.  There are times in our fast pace world that we need to settle for the microwave meal, but that should not be the norm.  It’s helpful, but it’s not best.  It works, but it’s not what we desire.  It’s fast, but maybe we need to slow down a bit.  Same goes for a Biblical vision in our life and ministry.  We can bring it on fast and furious and that may even work for a brief time but the lasting work will take time.  You can’t microwave a disciple.  You can’t microwave your spiritual health.  You can’t microwave scriptural truth into a fertile heart.

Big Green Egg:  When I first came across this slow cooker I didn’t believe it could be true.  You mean you can put a pot roast on a smoker/grill for 12 hours and walk off and leave it?  For years, I had smoked meat on a smoker grill and would sit by its side for 10-12 hours.  Constantly adjusting the intake and outtake controls.  Keeping the right amount of temperature on the meat.  It would take my whole day to accomplish.  Now, with a Big Green Egg, I can get the fire going, set the temperature, walk away for hours, and return with the meat finished and ready for consumption.  Oh Yeah!  I’m all in.  WOW, was it incredible and so much more enjoyable to cook.  The incredible aspect of  slow cooked meat is the way the process breakdowns the meat, tenderizes it, and fills it with the right amount of smoke flavor.  But it doesn’t happen without the expense of the Big Green Egg and the time to let the meat slow cook.  In our spiritual lives, we can substitute all kinds of programs and instant discipleship events, but the truth is becoming more like Jesus takes time.  It causes us to pay the price and let the experiences of time slow cook our hearts so they can become tender to His Spirit and full of the flavor of His presences. 

Semi-Truck:  The men and women who drive these vehicles have dedication and tenacity.  Have you noticed the number of semi’s on the road today?  When I take a road trip to see my son Dustin and his family in Indiana, I-65 is bumper to bumper semi’s going to or from somewhere.  Delivering the goods.  Keeping our economy and productions on schedule.  These folks are In It For The Long Haul.  Hours upon hours they drive.  Day upon day they travel.  City to city that deliver.  It is a life that is challenging and full of opportunities.  But, if a person is not in it For The Long Haul they will drop out quickly.  Same is true for our discipleship journey.  We see what God desires to do in us and through us, but it will take dedication and tenacity to see it through to the end.  Like a truck driver we need to be in it For The Long Haul.

Consider these three visual aids.  What do they say to you?  How can you take next steps towards digging deeper into the vision for your life and ministry?  How does God want to take you to new levels of grace, mercy, and love within your circles of concern.  Press on with Vision.  Dig deep into Vision.  Obey the call to Vision.  See what God does in the midst of your heart as you’re in it For The Long Haul.

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