Broccoli Soup

"A man's pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit" (Proverbs 29:23).

The snow was gently falling as we sat down to enjoy our Christmas Eve supper of soup, sandwiches, and cookies. The candles were lit, and the light from the flickering flames made each homemade Christmas ornament hanging from the windows twinkle. The house was cozy and warm from a full day of cooking, and the fragrant aromas tantalized our taste buds. Four young faces were eagerly anticipating opening their Christmas gifts after the meal, and my husband and I smiled in satisfaction at God's blessings. With Grandpa and Grandma's arrival earlier that afternoon, the perfect Christmas scene was now complete.

I had worked so hard to make everything just right and wanted to impress my in-laws with a memorable Christmas. I had made this meal many times and felt confident as I dished out the two different choices of soup: chili or broccoli-cheese. As we closed our eyes and my husband offered a prayer of thanks to God, I looked down at my bowl. I couldn't believe my eyes. There, swimming on top of my broccoli soup, were a dozen gnat-like bugs. I whispered to myself in agony, "Where did they come from?" Then, I remembered. I had forgotten to wash the broccoli before putting it into the soup. I could feel my heart sink with embarrassment even before my husband finished his prayer. This was going to be a memorable Christmas, all right, especially for my mother-in-law who had just been served buggy, broccoli soup.

Many times our motives for wanting things are so wrong. We want to impress instead of bless, and pride is waiting to bring us to our knees. What about your petitions? Are you selfishly asking God for things just to make you look good? If you're doing most of the talking during your prayer time with God, there may be a problem. Let the Holy Spirit correct your attitude today and don't wait to be served your cup of humble soup. "Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished" (Proverbs 16:5).

Lord, this Christmas, give me the same attitude that was in Christ Jesus when He emptied Himself to be born a man and die for my sins. Teach me again how to be a servant and care more about others than myself. In Jesus' name, Amen.

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JENNIFER B 12/22/2008 13:38:42

As I just stressed less than an hour ago to my oldest son how important it is that the house is perfectly clean for Christmas dinner, now I sit amazed how God has worked, yet again, to get the point across to me that it is NOT about me! My mother used to clean houses for a living and I have always felt, since I was a child until now at almost 35, that my cleaning doesn't live up to her expectations. She will find a reason to go to the master bathroom which puts me on edge because my room is the last room to get cleaned and the first room to have the last minute "I don't know what to do with this stuff so I'll shove it in my room" things. So my point is THANK YOU for once again being the voice that God uses to get a point across to me. I will pray for help to stop stressing over what my house could be and concentrate on letting my 3 boys enjoy the true meaning of Christmas. This is our homeschooling, potty training, crowded with books, projects & toys home and it's NOT ABOUT ME! Merry Christmas everyone & Happy Birthday Jesus!

DIANE P 12/23/2008 19:08:32

"Are you selfishly asking God for things just to make you look good?" What a question!!! One that needs to be thought about long & hard! At least with me it does. It's always good to be reminded of such things. I was always so stressed when we would have people in for a meal that my husband finally said that we could no longer have anyone in. My children love to be hospitable so I really had to change my attitude. The day after we moved to our new house, we had an elder & his wife over for tuna sandwiches after our evening service...& it was alot of fun! Thank you for the reminder of what is important! Blessings!

ANGELA A 12/22/2009 12:31:07

Angela Allen The questions we often asked are usually centered around ourselves; without thinking about a particular purpose, destiny, and will of God. We delve into seeking things we really don't need, or wanting it to compete with our friends, familiy, and others. However, true wisdom is humbling ourselves, and allowing God to exault us in due season.

MICHELLE S 12/21/2010 22:51:24

Thank you for this reminder. A great book by Welch called When People are Big and God is Small is an encouragement to those of us who fear man over God.

Jody F 12/21/2011 08:27:04

This devotional so reminded me of myself and all the years that I have had the Christmas gathering in our home. My father passed away about 8 wks ago and because of that and other feelings I\'ve been having we\'ve decided to not have the huge gathering but mainly focus on my mom and her needs. I\'ve been so blessed already this Christmas season with the unstress of it all. My mom would never think to complain about anything that is served or how the house looks - even though I am very particular even with my own family. I look forward to a very low key Christmas with the main event being our reverence toward a very holy happening so many years ago. I have always stressed to my children that this is not their birthday but the birthday of a King and the reason we give gifts is because He gave the ultimate gift - our eternal destiny!

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