Archive for June 28th, 2014

I’m so old I remember when we didn’t have air-conditioning or television. We lived in Jacksonville, Florida, and nine months out of twelve, it was hot—inside and outside the house.

Houses were constructed of wood, with large windows and screens, sash type windows you could slide up and down for maximum air flow. The floors were hardwood and off-grade, so air could circulated under, over, around, and through.

Daddy bought a window-box fan that fit just inside a window to draw air into the house. Of course, that meant we slept with all the windows open. None of us thought it strange to live in a world without artificial cooling. A world where our home was always unlocked. A world where God, home, and family were the basis for a great and godly America.

However, on hot summer afternoons, cooking supper over an open flame gas stove turned the kitchen into a sauna. Supper was the main meal of the day at our house, except on Sunday. Mealtime was always an event and Mama was a wonderful cook and our family loved to eat.

Finger-lickin’southern fried chicken—crispy, but melt in your mouth delicious, fried in her iron skillet. Picked-that-morning green beans, seasoned with a hock of ham, simmered on the back-burner. While potatoes waited to be mashed and slathered with butter. Real butter. Homemade biscuits—is there any other Hot in the Kitchen 6kind—baked to perfection in a hot oven. And her fresh baked pound cake cooled on a cake rack, waiting to be dressed with sugar-sweet strawberries and whipped cream.

The aromas titillated-the-taste-buds, but the kitchen was hot enough to melt wax. And me.

Mama told me over and again, if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Of course, she would be red-faced and sweating as her words blossomed to a full-fledged-guilt-cloud that dumped on my head. But like a good little southern girl, I cowgirled-up and stayed in the inferno to see the meal devoured, the dishes washed, and put away. My hands were the dishwashers, not some humming machine.

Years passed and this old saying twisted to a new meaning, inferring if we couldn’t take the pressure of difficult situations, decisions, and actions, we’d better get out of whatever situation needed solving.

I now have central air-conditioning, electric ranges, and refrigerators. But we still face fiery fumes of friction that require boldness, courage, and strength outside ourselves to act Hot in the Kitchen 5upon. Family problems, illnesses, job loss, financial difficulties, failing relationships, all cause great stress. And many folks decide rather than stay and solve their problems, it’s just too hot. They can’t stand the heat. So they leave.

“Be strong and courageous, for you shall give this people possession of the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go” (Joshua 1:6-7 NAS).
Hot in the Kitchen 4
This generation is no different than generations in the past. There are always going to be difficulties, distresses and dreadful decisions that must be resolved. But this generation no longer feels a sense of responsibility to untangle the messes we’ve created. We kick-the-issue down the path to a future where someone else will have to deal with the heat of our foolishness.

Problems require solutions, not can-kicks.

We’ve lost the ability to reach acceptable solutions in the hot,Hot in the kitchen 2 sticky kitchens of life. We’ve accepted personal and federal exorbitant debt as normal. Living beyond our means, we’ve become cowards who refuse to parent our off-springs. Parents who’d rather be their child’s friend than their hero. Our elected officials are more focused on the next election and paybacks, rather than the security and future of America.

Our government has so transgressed the Law of the Land, we are clinging to the cliffs of no return. And Congress, up to this Hot in the Kitchen 3point, has become impotent, incompetent, and ignorant.

When cooks leave life’s sizzling kitchens, families cease to follow and obey God, parents divorce, children become pawns or predators, businesses go bankrupt, the heart and soul of our foundation cracks, corruption and crime creep in among us like poison, government crumbles, and anarchy and tyranny become the law of the land.

We need godly folks, strong courageous folks. Folks willing to Hot in the Kitchen.jpg 1cowboy-up in the home, in schools, in businesses, the church, the State House, and in Washington, while there’s a glimmer of heat in America’s kitchens. While there’s still food to cook. And, while we still have memory and know-how, to repent of our rebellion toward God, and devote ourselves to repairing our crumbling walls of freedom.

“Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm” (Ephesians 6:10-13 NAS).

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