My mother was a superb cook. That's not just my opinion. It was the opinion of everyone who knew her and fond memories of her cooking were one of the main thoughts expresseds at her memorial service.
Over the years I heard many folks asking for her recipes for this and that. She'd give them a pencil and begin dictating. In essence her recipes were along the lines of, "You take some flour, add just a pinch of this, a little dab of that that and throw in some of that, beat it all together and bake until it's done."
When asked to clarify something, "Just how much is a pinch?" She would reply, "You know, a pinch is a pinch, it's a little more than a smidge."
The result always seemed to be followed by someone saying, "I must not have followed the recipe because mine didn't turn out."
It wasn't the cook's fault, it was the recipe my mother shared.
My mother's recipes were honest recipes. She did not have a deceitful thought in her head. She thought she wasn't holding anything back when she shared her recipe recollections.
And she wasn't.
My mother had developed her recipes to suit her needs and style. And every one of them was in her head. As a result they seldom worked for others the same way they did for her.
You see, Mother was an instinctual cook. She was very young when she began cooking. She was cooking full meals for her farming family and the farm hired workers from an age when dolls make up most of a young girl's life. A product of an unwed relationship she had been sent to an orphan's home only to be brought back as another set of hands and put to work at a very young age when her mother married. A river of meals have gone over my mother's stoves.
My mother's recipe sharing would have worked better had she been able to say, "1/2 teaspoon of this, 2 cups of that, a pint of this, blended for 8 minutes then cooked at 320 degrees for 45 minutes."
Sometimes even when detailed recipes are given with complete directions the results don't turn out with the original because folks substitute ingredients. "I didn't have any olive oil so I used lard." "I like sugar so I'll use twice as much as the recipe calls for." Then when the dish doesn't turn out like the original they blame the recipe.
God also shares recipes.
He gives recipes for life and godliness. He gives recipes for making churches. He gives recipes for worship.
God gives very detailed recipes. In order to produce the results of God's recipes one must follow God's recipes to the letter.
God has a recipe for worshipping Him.
"God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24 NKJV)
Those who worship God must worship Him with the right attitude (spirit) and according to truth.
What is "truth?"
"Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth." (John 17:17 NKJV)
"because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel," (Colossians 1:5 NKJV)
"For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe." (1 Thessalonians 2:13 NKJV)
Our worship must agree with God's word and God's word alone. We must speak where the Bible speaks and be silent where the Bible is silent. When we go strictly by the Word of God we have no need for man's creeds or following the teachings of men such as Wesley, Calvin, Smith, Rutherford and a whole list of others. When we worship in spirit and truth we shun descriptors such as Methodist, Baptist, Lutheran and so on and insist on being called simply Christians.
"And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’” (Matthew 15:9 & Mark 7:7 NKJV)
"which all concern things which perish with the using—according to the commandments and doctrines of men?” (Colossians 2:22 NKJV)
"not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth.” (Titus 1:14 NKJV)
Let us leave the teachings of men and go back to the Bible, and nothing else, in worshipping God.
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