O Lord, you know I hate buttermilk
O Lord, you know I hate buttermilk
Lately, some of my conversations have had a common theme, that of dissatisfaction. Folks don’t like how things in their lives are going. It’s no surprise, really. In spite of the abundance of blessings that surround us, there’s rarely a day when everything goes exactly to plan. When we are struggling with something or something that we’ve really been counting on falls short of our expectations or we’ve received some kind of bad news, it’s hard not to be disappointed and discouraged.
Some of us are homesick; others, though eager to start our college studies, are frustrated by the demands of classes outside our major. Perhaps your roommate situation isn’t all you hoped for or the job you thought would be perfect for you isn’t.
Those of us who work at Valpo aren’t immune to these blues. Even if life on campus is full of rewards, there are days when the workload feels overwhelming. Our home life can be bittersweet with concerns about children or aging parents filling our minds and threatening to rob us of our joy.
Frequently, jokes and pithy stories show up in my email inbox, forwarded from a friend or relative – sometimes from my mother who, at the age of 91, is on her computer daily. Recently, she sent along a story that I hope you’ll find both funny and useful. Perhaps you’ve seen a version. Here it is:
One Sunday morning at a small southern church, the new pastor called on one of his older deacons to lead in the opening prayer. The deacon stood up, bowed his head and said,”Lord, I hate buttermilk.”
The pastor opened one eye and wondered where this was going. The deacon continued, “Lord, I hate lard.” Now the pastor was totally perplexed. The deacon continued, “Lord, I ain’t too crazy about plain flour. But after you mix ’em all together and bake ’em in a hot oven, I just love biscuits.”
“Lord, help us to realize when life gets hard, when things come up that we don’t like, whenever we don’t understand what You are doing, that we need to wait and see what You are making. After You get through mixing and baking, it’ll probably be something even better than biscuits. Amen.”
Now, this is not to say there won’t be times for honest, broken-hearted mourning. We’ve all been alive long enough to know that such days will come. That said, the words of this wise deacon’s prayer ring true because in the work of Christ, everything resolves into resurrection.
I pray that when things aren’t going your way, you’ll find the hopeful resolve to wait for, and even expect, the biscuits.
Peace and joy,
Sept. 6, 2017
Rev. James A. Wetzstein serves as one of our university pastors at Valpo and takes turns writing weekly reflections.
- Archives of Devotional Writings from our Pastoral Staff
- “Some Lent!”
- (Your vocation here) of people
- A Point of Privilege
- A season of anticipation
- Advent = Hope
- All will be well
- Are we willing to cross the road for one another?
- Better Together
- Can we learn to be happy?
- Carrying the COVID Cross
- Come and See
- Did Jesus really suffer?
- Doing without in a life of plenty
- Don’t miss this moment
- Exiles with Vision
- Fear not!
- Feeling at Home
- Finding Purpose in the Journey
- Finding Words for Times Like These
- Forgiving others – and ourselves
- Getting ahead with Jesus
- Getting down on Jesus’ level
- Have yourself a merry little Christmas — somehow
- Holy Week and Taking Out the Trash
- Holy Week: The aid station late in the semester
- Hopes & Dreams vs Life in the Wilderness
- How glad we’ll be if it’s so
- I almost slipped
- In a time of uncertainty, these things are certain
- In praise of plans B … C … D …
- In Praise of Skeptical Disciples
- In the midst of grief, God will bring life
- Is there such a thing as being too forgiving?
- It’s a Three Day Weekend!
- It’s In the Bag
- It’s What’s Happening
- Killing off our future selves
- Lessons in fire building
- Let us work for real wellness in our communities
- Life Is a Highway
- Lilies and leaves and whatever else is beautiful
- Living in the Present
- O Lord, you know I hate buttermilk
- Of Fear and Failure
- On Christian Unity: When we’re not one big happy church
- On the Bucket List
- Pray and Let God Worry
- Preparing for the world to be turned rightside up
- Recovering from an Epic Fail
- Reformation calls for examination
- Remembering among the forgetful
- Seeing beauty in brokenness
- Signs of Love
- Starting Small
- Still in the storm
- Taking a Break from the Relentless
- Talking ourselves into it
- Thankfulness leads to joyfulness
- The Art of Holy Week
- The Funny Business of Forgiveness
- The Greatest of These is Love
- The Magi: Exemplars of Faith and Learning
- The Power of Small Conversations
- The Power of Taking a Sabbath
- The Spiritual Gift of Hindsight
- This can’t be done alone
- To be known
- You will be in our prayers this summer of 2020
- Ventures of which we cannot see the ending
- We had hoped
- What do you do with your anger?
- What is your base reality?
- What to do after you find your voice
- What to do on the day after
- What we know and what we don’t know
- When bad things happen
- When joy and sadness live together
- When the promise of resurrection is hard to believe
- When you offer up your broken cup
- Where God will be found
- Where is the good shepherd carrying you?
- Wilderness Journeys
- Year-end time management: Keeping the main thing the main thing
- Your Valpo roots will help you grow into your future