Raw meat is the worst.
I prepped a turkey meatloaf this morning and was quickly reminded of the extremely unpleasant sound and sight of dumping a pound of raw, grounded turkey into a bowl.
Gabe, my curious three year old, hopped up on the counter, per usual whenever I am doing anything in the kitchen, as he loves to “help.”
He glanced in the bowl, probably hoping to see some cookie dough or banana bread batter but found raw turkey staring back at him. He took a sniff which immediately ensued a loud and dramatic “eeeewwwww” out of him. “I don’t want to eat that.”
Well me neither buddy, I thought. No one wants to eat raw, ground turkey.
I proceeded to chop some basil which resulted in another “eeewww… I don’t want to eat that either.”
Me neither, I thought.
This same sort of game continued through the garlic powder, salt, the raw egg, the tomato paste and the almond flour.
Gabe and I came to the same conclusion. We didn’t want to eat any of the ingredients by themselves.
Cooking is probably a little confusing for a three year old. If raw turkey, garlic powder and chopped basil aren’t enticing to eat, why would he want to taste what’s made after those things are combined?
But I’ve been cooking for a while. And I’ve got a different perspective. I know that you’ve got to put all the ingredients together in order to complete the finished product. What tastes awful alone becomes the perfect combination of taste when mixed with other ingredients. You can’t leave anything out or you’ll be missing an important flavor.
And the finished product is good. It’s nourishing. It feeds me and it feeds others.
I told Gabe to trust the chef. I told him I knew what I was doing. I had the recipe in my hand.
It’s so much like life, right?
“Eeewww… wait a second God, I don’t want that.” “Yuck, that doesn’t look like it’s very appetizing either.”
Often times the things we really don’t want to swallow become the very key ingredients to completing the recipe of our life.
A failure. A diagnosis. A failed relationship. A loss. An injury. A difficult child.
These things taste awful on their own. Not easy to take down.
But He’s got a different perspective.
Combined with our past experiences, our relationships, His future plans for us, our gifts and talents, who He made us to be… these yucky, solitary ingredients can become the secret component to something very special.
He knows what it takes to complete the process in our life. He’s got the recipe in His hand. The finished product will be good and nourishing; able to feed ourselves and others.
We’ve just got to trust the Chef.