"Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him."
"...serve Him shoulder to shoulder."
I think my dear friend, Lucille, is one of the most uniquely gifted women I know. God has given her the gifts of teaching and hospitality, just to name a few. Educated in culinary arts and having worked on television cooking shows for many years as a Professional Food Stylist with some of the finest chefs and cookbooks authors, God prepared her for a rare and specific ministry.
I remember a few summers ago, she and I and two other girlfriends gathered for lunch. As we laughed, chatted and caught up with one another, Lucille shared this idea for a ministry called Psalm 34:8 Cooking. Wow. Like a movie reel fast forwarding in my mind, I could see how God had been readying Lucille for this ministry over the years. We sat with her excitedly as we talked about different ideas and encouraged her with this vision.
Since that time, I've had the privilege of continuing to pray for and see God's work in Lucille heart and hands and how He is developing this very unique ministry where Lucille teaches God's Word and shares the Gospel through culinary arts and cooking classes. Lucille loves to learn, and through that passion He has been shaping her gift of teaching. She's been faithful to seek Him, wait on Him and honor Him. She doesn't rush ahead of Him. Simply choosing to abide in the Vine daily, He is bringing forth sweet fruit as she encourages us to "taste and see". Song of Solomon 2:3 ~ His fruit is sweet to my taste.
Recently, for our Gather and Grow Bible Study annual season finale, Lucille presented her class "Abide In The True Vine". As our taste buds enjoyed delicious culinary creations all from the grape vine, our hearts received encouragement, comfort and conviction from God's Word, the richest of fare. Isaiah 55:2 ~ Listen, listen to Me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.
One of my favorites of all of Lucille's classes, Abide In The True Vine is a great lesson for Christians already abiding in Christ and also as an outreach to those that may not be. Lucille illustrates the necessity of receiving our sustenance, nourishment and life from the True Vine. She also discusses the life-changing difference between religion and a personal relationship with Jesus.
As I delight to see how God is shaping Lucille and her ministry, my heart pauses and my eyes look around to see how He is working in the hearts and lives of those I love. What gifts is He giving and growing? What dreams and desires is He placing in the hearts of those I hold dear? Just as it is fun to taste and see, it is awesome to watch, pray and rejoice. Colossians 4:2 ~ Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
Though we are often unaware, He is preparing us for great works for His purposes and glory. Ephesians 2:10 ~ For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
His goodness and blessings stir my heart to marvel. As I delight with my dear friend, Lucille, as she beautifully teaches God's Word through culinary arts, I am reminded that the Vine Dresser wants to bear fruit through all of our lives. He has gifted us, invites us to dine with Him and partake in His goodness. As we abide, He places dreams and desires in our hearts, uses the gifts He has given us and produces delicious, genuine fruit. He satisfies our souls with the richest of fare.
Therefore if anyone cleanses himself...
he will be a vessel for honor,
sanctified and useful for the Master,