“I suppose I can do this.”
My thoughts when I first tried to make mayonnaise.
The recipe I had didn’t call for many ingredients: oil, egg, salt, mustard, and vinegar. What I wasn’t told about mayonnaise is that the oil must be added slowly as it’s being blended. Also for the best result, the oil should be very clear. Where I lived at the time (1987 Kalemie, Zaire) clear oil was scarce. The most common was a brand, “Oki” that was cloudy, which made me wonder what was in it, but I tried not to wonder too much.
Time and again I followed directions given to me and time and again I failed. I dissolved into tears after many attempts and resigned myself to failure until a friend came and talked me through the process. I was making two errors: the oil was cloudy and I wasn’t adding it properly. She brought a clear bottle of oil to my kitchen and demonstrated the process. **Remember this was years before the advent of YouTube and internet where I could’ve gotten a video tutorial!**
- Add all ingredients to the blender, except ¾ of the oil.
- Trickle clear oilinto the blender as it’s running and the mayonnaise will emulsify.
That night we had sandwiches with real mayonnaise. I finally made mayonnaise, but supposing I could do it without knowing the process was messy and expensive; supposing cost me.
It’s not an uncommon problem we have, supposing we understand. Life is full of supposing moments but when we suppose without actually understanding, we risk disaster.
Moses had an experience with supposing in Acts 7:23-25 NASB “…it entered his mind to visit his brethren…and he supposed his brethren understood that God was granting them deliverance through him, but they did not understand.”
Moses apparently knew he was a Hebrew since “it entered his mind to visit his brethren.” He was also a member of Pharaoh’s household. He supposed that the people would understand that with his status, he would deliver them. While he knew he was chosen, he didn’t know the One Who chose him. He assumed he would do the job himself.
He supposed wrong.
Moses fled to Midian after he killed an Egyptian. There he stayed for 40 years, married, had children, was a shepherd, and the dream of deliverance was long-forgotten. Until God appeared to him and he came to know Him Who would deliver the people.
Acts 7:35 NASB “This Moses whom they disowned, saying ‘Who made you a ruler and a judge?’ is the one whom God sent to be both a ruler and a deliverer with the help of the angel who appeared to him in the thorn bush.”
Once Moses knew Who God was, he was sent to be the deliverer of the Hebrews. The difference was when Moses went back to Egypt, he knew he wasn’t doing the work in himself, God was working through him.
God wants to work through us but before we can see the miraculous, we have to know Him. There’s no way we can work for Him without having Him work in us first. Otherwise, our lives become like cloudy oil that can’t emulsify or unite with God and His purpose. Blending with His purposes to the point where we can’t tell where we end and God begins comes with a great expense: misunderstanding and rejection by those around us because our lives make absolutely no sense.
No, it doesn’t make sense to others but it makes perfect sense to me.
Like a perfect batch of mayonnaise.
~ Lea Peters
Lea Peters, aka The Cultural Misfit, has served as a missionary in Africa with her husband since 1987. They have served in Zaire (DRC), Burundi, Tanzania, Zambia and Malawi. Together, they work to plant churches and establish faith-based community outreaches. Lea has four children and two grandchildren. Her blog is a collection of “misfit journeys” from a Kingdom perspective: we are all pilgrims on our way to the city whose Builder and Maker is God.