Oatmeal & Jesus

I started eating oatmeal for breakfast. Do I like oatmeal? No. Not at all…but I like the idea of oatmeal (and I hear it’s good for you — although these days I’m not quite sure what to believe when it comes to food), therefore, I am attempting to acquire a love for it. I mean if people can do it with beer surely I can do it with maple cinnamon oatmeal.

I’ve tried cooking it 10 different ways. Microwave it with water. Microwave it with milk. Cook it for longer. Cook it for less time. Cook it on the stove. With milk. With more milk. With less milk. For longer. For less time.

I’ve realized if I make it on the stove with just under 2/3 cup of milk and I cook it for just about 1 minute and 32 seconds I can eat about 12 tiny bites (not big as that makes me want to gag) before I give up and feed the rest to Malachi.

Why am I doing this? I have no idea, but I am convinced that if I keep eating it then at some point I will come to know its goodness. I don’t know.

Fourteen years ago I was on my knees, in the grass, in the dark, arguing with God in an effort to convince him I was not cut out for any sort of ministry. A song came on in the midst of my arguing and the lyrics were if you say go, we will go. If you say wait we will wait. If you say step out on the water and they say it can’t be done, we’ll fix our eyes on you and we will come. 

For years I thought it would be missions, but seven years ago I got on a plane heading back to the states, leaving a gypsy village where people rode in buggies and I slept in a tent…where strange huge lizard-caterpillars attempted to attack me in my tent, where chickens roamed the dirt streets. I thought I’d be doing this for years. Instead I jumped on a plane and headed back to my college town with no house or job and very confused about what God was doing.

Today I walked into the building that houses a ministry I’ve loved since my first day of college and started “working.”

Brooke, I’m going to give you a passion for missions, put an ache in your heart for the world to know me, then send you back to “normal.” You will work an 8-5 job for 7 years. Lots of good things will happen during that time…but some terrible things will shake you to the core. Despite it all you will find joy because of Me and you will experience strength you never knew. You will learn so much more about how much I love you. Then I will redeem everything. Not only will I restore you and heal brokenness, but I’m going to bring you two more of the biggest blessings of your life, miraculously allow you to leave your job so that you can stay home with your little people, and let you work (with as much flexibility as you want) in the ministry. And I’m going to give you this interesting desire to write a blog and tell everyone about what I’m doing in your life. And it doesn’t end there. Just wait and see. Sincerely, God. 

Well He probably wouldn’t have said it in these exact words…or even close to these words, but this is how I see it looking back. I’ve never liked surprises. I like to be in control and know what’s going on. I think I have good plans…ha. That’s only minimally ridiculous.

“The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)

P.S. This has nothing to do with oatmeal, but here’s my attempt for those of you who need it to come full circle… I am convinced that if you take the nasty, confusing, frustrating, heartbreaking, moments…believing that God has a plan…someday you will taste the beauty of it all!

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