“It Doesn’t Taste Good Without Raisins”

5 05 2010

Our son Jack-Jack was excited (OK, maybe not that excited but who’s counting) about eating Raisin Bran for breakfast this morning. First off, does anyone else know a 4-year-old who would choose Raisin Bran over Honeycombs? This is the kind of person who actually enjoyed Indiana Jones 4. (I still love ya Matt)

Anyway, as he neared the end of his foray into fiber he found the bowl filled with only milk and bran, to which he exclaimed “It doesn’t taste good without raisins.” Little did he know that his statement of the obvious would become fodder for this blog.
(The alliteration in the preceeding paragraph was Fantastic!)

The Bible tells us we need to be “speaking the truth in love,” which basically means, “If you are gonna give a kid his fiber, make sure you include the raisins!”

If you think of truth as the doctrine of the Bible, then loves becomes the raisins or that “spoonful of sugar.”

We tend to swing back and forth between two extremes. In one corner you have the “truth first Bible bashers” while in the other you find the” just love everybody and it will work itself out” group. As you might surmise, this is basically comparing eating a bowl of bran with eating a bowl of raisins. I don’t know which food represents which ideal, but I don’t want to eat either one of  ’em.

Without love our offering of truth becomes a “resounding gong,” according to the Bible. Basically, we becoming an annoying nuisance to society and to our circle of influence in particular. But, failing to offer truth, by buying into the lie that pointing out a person’s blind spots is unloving or judgemental is equally detrimental. The Bible tells us that we are supposed to address sin in peoples lives, contrast the God of the Bible with the false religion of the world, and present Jesus as the Christ including His death, burial and resurrection (offer truth); but not to the neglect of love.  (here are a few examples)

Here’s how I see it. The Bible teaches that we love because He first loved us. It also teaches that God is love, and that no greater  loves exists that someone who would lay down their life for a friend. All of those statements are statements of doctrine… or truth. The whole idea of love is rooted in Christian theology. Without a truly selfless heart our “love” is self-serving and shallow. It doesn’t really consider others as better than us (as the Bible teaches). This “love” serves the one acting and not the one receiving… it’s not true love.

It is borderline evil to observe someone killing themselves with their choices and choose to avoid addressing those choices with them. Basically, we are loving ourselves by avoiding the more difficult path of conflict and reconciliation. Authentic, Biblical love gets involved.

The love of Christianity looks with compassion on those who are struggling and willingly gets into their mess to help them out. That’s what Jesus did. He entered our mess, even allowed our mess to be thrown upon Him in order to lovingly offer the truth of His forgiveness. That guy rocks!

Let’s remember today that our world needs raisins and bran.

My dad used to always say, in an effort to manage the house with 6 selfish kids living in it, “If you see something that needs to be done, do it.” He was referring to folding laundry, turning off a light, or unloading a dish washer; but I would like to offer similar more relational advice. “If you see someone who needs their raisins or their bran… give it to them.”

Your world is riddled with folks who need love through encouragement or sympathy and equally full of folks who need love through a swift kick in the pants.” You can be that love. You should be that love. The most unloving thing we can do is… nothing.

Hopefully this little thought was an enjoyable bowl of cereal 🙂 Enjoy your breakfast!




One response

5 05 2010
Amanda H

Perfect! Sometime we need a little of both 🙂 Tell Jackson, I agree it does taste better with raisins 🙂

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