Sunday, January 3, 2016

Banana Pudding and Good Intentions

As any Texas born native will tell you, one of the most loved desserts in the south is banana pudding. The delectable goodness of silky vanilla pudding with sweet Nilla wafers and ripe bananas. Until just a few days ago, I have never learned how to make one of my most favorite desserts of all times. One reason is, I never had the time to learn. And two, I just REFUSE to cheat and make it with instant pudding. It may be a lot easier and faster, but to me and possibly half the south, it just doesn't taste nearly as good.

So, with the best of intentions, I decided I would learn how to make it and bring it to a friend's house that my husband and I were going to visit that evening. With all the desire, will, and good intentions I had, and now with the time to learn it, I found a recipe on the internet I thought would work. I gathered all the ingredients and followed the recipe as it was written. Almost two hours later..... EPIC FAILURE. I was so upset. It isn't very often that I have the will to go all out and make a homemade dessert. I'm not much of a baker. So, what do you do when you are expected to be somewhere.... with a dessert.... in 10 minutes? You stop by Subway and buy a dozen cookies!

I had good intentions and I wanted to bring a homemade dessert to our neighbors for dinner. Unfortunately, it didn't quite work out like I planned.

A lot of us have good intentions, especially at the beginning of the new year. We intend on getting in shape or changing bad habits. Some of us make spiritual goals like reading the Bible more, serving in church more, or praying more often. But, if you are like me and many others, those good intentions are often forgotten and within a month, old habits return. The Bible is left on the nightstand for a day, then the next day, then another... and another until we forget the resolution we made to read it all together.

What we lack is follow through - commitment. Goals are only as good as the commitment to follow through; which I admit I am among the worst at keeping. So, since I have yet to make a resolution for 2016, I decided I would make a resolution to not give up. I am going to make a more intentional effort to follow through with my good intentions. Too often I think that I should give someone a call, write a note of gratitude, make an effort to encourage others and fail to do it because I forget that day or something comes up. It is never too late to show someone you care or that you love them.

Instead of just giving up on making the banana pudding, I spent all afternoon, the next day, figuring out how to make the pudding work. And... after three LONG attempts, I got it! My pudding turned out beautifully. I was so pleased with how the pudding turned out. I was so proud of myself.... (and then...)

It doesn't matter how many new year's resolutions or goals you have; how great your goals are to improve yourself. It doesn't matter if you intend on loosing 30 pounds, read the Bible daily, or exercise 4 days per week. What matters is follow through. Even if you forget or mess up. What matters is you don't give up, you press on and persevere. You make every effort to start over and try again.
"And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up." Galatians 6:9 ESV
Thankfully, even if we do mess up, forget, or give up on our goals, we have a perfect Savior who never gives up on us and never forgets us. Jesus is always there to pick us up when we fall.
"Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the LORD holds them by the hand." Psalm 37:24 NIV
Another lesson I learned in this is that when we make well intended resolutions, when we actually make it and reach our weight loss goals, we read through the entire Bible, or we serve in church as we intended, we give thanks to the One who gave us the ability to achieve them in the first place.

So, let us also be careful to not become prideful and celebrate our own efforts to achieve our goals. As happy as I was to actually achieve a GREAT pudding, You may have noticed in the picture above, I rushed through the last part and messed up the topping. Through my prideful celebration, I botched the meringue. I allowed my pride and excitement of FINALLY making a great pudding distract me from the last step. I rushed through making the meringue and messed it up.
"Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." Colossians 3:17
Thankfully the dessert tasted great, but I did learn two valuable lessons in all this. Good intentions can indeed be good, but are not good without follow through; nothing is achieved without action. And whatever we aim to achieve and the goals we set for ourselves, let them be for the glory of God and His son Jesus Christ and not become too prideful and boast in our own abilities.

May you be blessed this year and achieve the goals and resolutions you wish to achieve.. and not a sink full of dirty dishes and a botched meringue! To God be the Glory!

4 comments :

  1. I LOVED it! I remember one celebration dinner that my youngest daughter made. She's a great cook (takes after her dad, I think). It was delicious! However, when it came to the dessert, one that she had never made before, a 4 Layer Cake...she began to cry as the top layer began to lean, and lean...you get the picture. I walked over to her and whispered, "We can fix this. Do you have a Trifle bowl?" She said yes, tears still running down her cheeks. "Let's make the cake into something as delicious," while I began to place the pieces of cake in layers in the bowl. "There you go. Aa trifle!" It was delicious. No matter what you think are "mistakes" made, God can turn them around and make it wonderful. Look what He did with SIN. Look at the BLESSING He made out of us! Lemonade out of lemons, using an old cliche. "Whatever you do..."

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    1. Thank you for visiting! Yes! God can make all our mistakes turn good for His glory!
      Amanda :)

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  2. What an awesome life lesson to draw from the experience of trying, and trying again, to get a dessert to turn out right! And I've lived in TX before and I've never tasted one. Guess I'm missing out.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by Rachel! If you haven't eaten Banana Pudding, I HIGHLY suggest you get some! It is awesome!

      Amanda

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