One night, as we sat in our cosy little breakfast nook, my husband and I dipped our spoons into steaming bowls of homemade soup. As we slurped away, Brian commented that it was really good soup and I had to agree. Somehow the buttery, creamy base was a perfect compliment to the crunchy wild rice, sliced mushrooms and tender chicken. Paired with slices of sourdough bread slathered with butter; we enjoyed a tasty meal for a cold November evening. This deliciousness invited us to want for more.
Just the thought of those combined flavors and the nice satisfied feeling I had after partaking in that soup's offerings brings back some strong desires to get that recipe out and make it again because we want for more.
I can't help but think through how my tasting soup relates to my tasting God's goodness.
Audrey Assad offers an idea.
(Click title to listen.)
I Shall Not Want
From the love my own comfort...From the fear of having nothing...From a life of worldly passions.
Deliver me, O God.
From the need to be understood...And from a need to be accepted...From the fear of being lonely
Deliver me, O God...Deliver me, O God
And I shall not want, no, I shall not want
When I taste Your goodness, I shall not want...When I taste Your goodness, I shall not want
From the fear of serving others...Oh, and from the fear of death or trial...And from the fear of humility
Deliver me, O God...Yes, deliver me, O God
Our needs and fears seem to overshadow any of God's goodness but the refrain, reflecting Psalm 23, tells us that His goodness provides and I shall not want.
Hunger. Tasting. Desiring to be satisfied. All are human realities. But everything that we hunger for, everything we taste, fills us for a longing for more.
Except our Heavenly Father.
1 Peter 2:2-3 "Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good."
How can we taste His goodness and find it to be so great that it shows us a glimpse of Him and satisfies our longings? It seems that God has His ways of showing Himself. Do we have eyes to see and senses that taste and know?
- A start would be to sit daily with our Bibles open to study deeply and chew on His amazing Word.
- Perhaps there's no money for a Christmas tree and one day you see the pastor driving up the long lane with a beautiful long-needled tree secured on top of his car. Ah...a glimpse of God!
- Perhaps your loved one is very sick and people come in to pray and sing and recite beautiful verses over you. There He is again.
- Perhaps your house floods and your church family pulls together $17,000 in one Sunday to help you get started on your way back to normal.
- Perhaps a husband dies in an accident and the wife looks out the window and talks to God, trusting Him as sovereign.
- Perhaps you have no job but at just the perfect time, your next door neighbor calls and tells you one of his employees has quit and, would you like a job? Ahh the goodness of God shining.
- Perhaps your child is very sick and your church family prays, visits, brings meals, babysits for you - for several years. Thank you God for your goodness!
- Perhaps a careless word was sent in your direction and you took great offense at it. But God gave you the grace to forgive and not hold on to the offense! His goodness is beautiful.
- Perhaps you give birth or adopt a baby and you look deep into those eyes and see in them one so fresh from God. Taste such delights from His hand!
- Perhaps you risk and share the gospel with a salesman on the phone. You feel you messed up the words but God uses those offerings in ways unseen. Oh the joy of seeing and tasting His goodness.
- Perhaps you feel Him inviting you into a ministry far away. It is a big invitation but you say yes. You leave everything and go. Glimpses of his beauty speak volumes on a daily basis as you only have Him to rely on.
- Perhaps you travel to a beautiful place...a national park or a rain forest or an ocean or the mountains. You see the beauty he has created and can only imagine the Creator of all this and find yourself mesmerized by such immense beauty. Inside you are somehow deeply thankful and greatly satisfied.
- Perhaps your daughter has been found murdered and somewhere deep within comes the desire and the grace to forgive. Oh nothing but the goodness of God can allow such freedom.
- Perhaps your church has been invaded and terrorized and many are killed. But your faith remains firm and God is your solid rock and extreme comfort.
- Perhaps you see the frolicking of deer, the twittering of the birds, the chewing of the squirrel and the silence of the forest. Hello beautiful God! These are lovely gifts given by your hand.
Ann Voskamp writes in One Thousand Gifts, "Do I have eyes to see it's Him and not the thing?"
Do I? Do we?
When we taste your goodness we shall not want. We can only worship and sit in amazed thankfulness.
The satiating of this kind of hunger is a far cry from tasting a delicious bowl of homemade soup. It finds and meets a deeper longing, one we absolutely cannot satisfy by our own doing. Only God can give us himself through Christ. Only He stops that excruciating poverty of spirit we cannot fix in any way except to come to Him and be filled... so full that we just don't want anything else, except more of him.
Taste and see that the Lord is good.
And if you're interested, here's the recipe mentioned above. Delicious. (Just ask Brian.)
Chicken, Wild Rice and Mushroom Soup
Prep: 15 minutes Cook: 45 minutes
3 14.5-oz. cans chicken broth
1 cup chopped carrots
½ cup chopped onion
½ cup chopped celery
½ cup uncooked wild rice, rinsed and drained
½ tsp. dried thyme, crushed
3 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
3 Tbsp butter
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups chopped cooked chicken or turkey
1. In a 4-qt Dutch oven combine 2 cans of the broth, the carrots, onion, celery, wild rice and dried thyme. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 40-45 minutes or until rice is tender but still chewy, adding mushrooms during the last 5 minutes of cooking.
2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour, salt and pepper. Add the remaining 1 can of broth. Cook and stir until slightly thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 minute more; stir in cream. Add cream mixture to rice mixture, stirring constantly. Stir in chicken, heat through. If desired, sprinkle with additional black pepper.