by, Salena Stormo
A smile crossed my face as I looked up at the clock! Ah it was noon, time for lunch. I ran to the break room, heated up my lunch and went back to my desk for a few moments of solitude. No pressure, no deadlines and no phone calls for exactly 60 minutes.
Staring down at my bowl of tightly wound white noodles, soaking in a brownish sauce I had to laugh. At 35 years old how did I get started on a diet of Ramen Soup for lunch? This is the food of college freshmen who are too poor to eat anything else, yet hungry and driven enough to eat it just so they can keep going. It is meant to sustain them during their learning process and fill their stomachs to keep them going. At 12 cents a bag and a variety of flavors how can they go wrong? But here I was, eating the bowl of pre-cooked wheat flour and hydrogenated oil, disguising itself as a hearty bowl of soup. In countries like South Korea, Japan and China you can actually order ramen soup at fancy restaurants. You know what they say, whatís good for the gooseÖ
It did make me wonder though, at what point in our lives did we start craving an elaborate meal of crab legs or thick sirloin steak? When did we begin to desire more than the basics meant to sustain us through our own spiritual learning process? And how did what we eat, what we wear and where we live suddenly become so important that our lives became consumed by it? Keeping up with the Jonesí has allowed many businesses to prosper because we always feel the need to have the latest and greatest of everything, whether it is a new iPhone or the latest fashion.
In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples. Luke 14:33 NIV
But Jesus didnít live in fancy houses as he traveled mile after mile on foot teaching about Godís love. He slept under the stars, taking shelter under trees, even fasting in the wilderness with no food and only angels to look after him. He didnít weigh himself down with materialistic items, clad in his tunic and sandals, carrying with him only the words God put in his heart. He asked for compassion and simplicity from those who traveled with him.
When Jesus heard this, he said to him, ďYou still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.Ē Luke 18:22 NIV
Jesus taught us that we donít need to have elaborate meals or fine furniture to win Godís love and the grace of His forgiveness. We can lead simple lives and still be greeted at the Kingdom of Heaven with open arms. Just like Ramen soup is nourishing and filling, so is Godís love. It doesnít have to come in fancy packages tied with gold strings. It can be a simple act of kindness from a stranger, the love of those we surround ourselves with or the joy of nature that God has blessed us with.
Sustain yourself with basics and see Godís love shine brightly on you. Can living a life less bogged down with possessions bring about a happier lifestyle filled with opportunities to reach out and do His calling in a cloud free environment? Can your soul live on Ramen Soup?
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