A recent trip to Branson, Missouri, took us through Leslie, Arkansas, with a meal stop at Ryan’s Main Street Grill. It was a great meal. I especially enjoyed the grilled veggies, but when we chose one of Vicki’s homemade desserts to split a piece of Strawberry pie, all four of us who were travelling together commenced to rant and rave. With all due respect to the wonderful desserts my Momma could prepare, that piece of Strawberry pie was perhaps the best dessert I have ever placed in my mouth. Real cream filling, real, fresh strawberries, real, freshly made whip cream, freshly crushed, moist, lightly sweetened graham cracker crust – it was like a little bit of heaven on the taste buds. And, of course, you know where our meal stop was on the return trip, which was an equally pleasurable meal. We can go through life living on whipped concoctions of artificial cream, artificial flavors and colors, whipped cream out of a can, and mass produced crusts. There is a whole “nuther” realm of life’s pleasures when we get a hold of the real deal.
It is the same in the spiritual realm. We can go through life with a dry, artificial, religious experience that seems to get us by. It’s good, and we figure that is all there is to it. Our “normal” is limited to what we have been taught and what we have experienced. Then along our journey we make a stop in the Word of God and we find something that is not just some manufactured, left over religion that somebody has routinely cranked out. It is not something somebody whipped up in a frenzy with air and soybean oil. We get a taste of the real thing, and we say, “Oh! This is good! I never knew…” We want more so we purposely make a stop to get more, and it is good! When we approach God, and his Word, and his Spirit with an unbiased mind, we can begin to taste and see and experience that there is more to what Jesus did for us than just forgiveness. There is a fullness of fellowship through the reality of his Spirit that goes beyond mere knowledge. There is a walk with God that comes out of a settled revelation of truth, not requiring whipping something up in a frenzy. There are imparted gifts and supernatural power that we each personally can walk in to accomplish God’s work on earth as it is in heaven – just as Jesus taught and led us to do. There is nothing artificial, it is all good, and it magnifies Jesus, the one who made this “pie” for us to enjoy and receive sustenance. It’s all there for us. It’s on the menu. We can either choose a piece of religious dry toast, or we can get the steak and finish off with the strawberry pie. We can get all we need to enjoy the journey to the fullest because of Jesus.