Follow Instructions

One of the ppl I live with has been wanting bread pudding.

They used to be able to get it from a store near the house. It’s never there.

I went to another location. I decided I would make it if I couldn’t find it.

Found out it is no longer sold pre-made.

I found a recipe for it. My phone was dying so I looked at all the ingredients. I bought what wasn’t at the house and left.

I decided to watch a Facebook live about love. Shout out to my fellow blogger and her husband.

Honestly, I didn’t even read the recipe in full. Just the ingredients and like one instruction about the bread. And the recipe was behind a pay wall after so many observations.

I thought I could access it after registering. Nope. I had to subscribe. I discovered this after I had cut the bread poured the milk on it, and decided to see if I was following instructions.

Surprise surprise. I was NOT. I should have made a custard with the milk.

Let me pause and say I am not a baker. I make a few desserts that require minimal effort. Cooking though? Baaaaaybeeeee. Ima add a pic. I cooks.

Okay. Back on track. I proceeded to melt the butter and add the sugar and vanilla to it. I beat the eggs.

But, I had a realization. I know from watching cooking shows that ya girl is finna make caramel or something similar.

I tried to squeeze the milk out of the bread. Fail. I opened the refrigerator to see if there was milk. There usually isn’t. But heaven smiled on this mess. Right on the door was a baby container.

I didn’t even measure it. I just dumped it. It was cold so it cooled the butter and sugar. I realize that now. I did notice that the butter stopped melting.

But, there was already the appropriate amount of milk on the bread. I didn’t fully follow instructions for adding the stove mixture to the eggs.

They said it had to cool. But chiiiiii. I knew it wasn’t hot. So, I mixed it then poured it on the bread then put it in the oven.

Oh. I also added more bread. And now that I think about it, it wasn’t as sweet as it could have been because I didn’t add more sugar. Gah.

I just KNEW it was gonna be nasty. However, the two ppl who ate it liked it. One said I just needed to add the pre-made cinnamon sugar to it. I said it wasn’t sweet enough and reminded me of French toast. I def used brioche and, again, not enough sugar.

The ppl in the comments of the recipe also said it should soak in the mixture. I saw that before I baked it. But it was already a mess and getting late. Next time. I’m gonna try again. Lol.

That made me think of us and how we relate to God sometimes. When we don’t follow instructions or kinda follow them we end up with a mess. I could list more of my mistakes but, I’m gonna go to the Good Book.

Abraham was told he would have a baby with Sarah. She didn’t believe or was impatient. She sent her maid Hagar to have the baby, Ishmael. She treated Hagar harshly. She ended up with a baby, Isaac, and then sent Ishmael and Hagar away. As a result, Ishmael’s descendents are at odds with Isaac’s to this day. (Flit around Genesis. I’m usually good about citing. But I’m being lazy. Apologies.)

Moses was told to speak to the rock to get water. He hit it in frustration. As a result, God told him he would never see the Promised Land. After all that he had done. (Exodus my friend.)

Samson was told not to cut his hair or he’d lose his strength. He got involved with a woman who wasn’t an Israelite and spilled the secret. It resulted in him losing his hair, strength, eyes, and ultimately his life. (Judges will tell it all.)

The prophet Samuel gave King Saul instructions from God (Samuel trained as a priest but became a prophet. Priests performed the burnt sacrifices.) to destroy everyone and everything-including the animals. Saul saved the animals so that they could be offered as a sacrifice to God. Samuel was like bro, uh uh. You messed up and God is giving the kingdom to another. (1 or 2 Kings. One of em. You’re already on a device that will let you search or google.)

Saul’s successor David was a man of war after God’s heart. As a teen he killed five giants with five stones and a slingshot when nobody else could kill them.

Israel is at war later after David ascends the throne. Normally, kings were at war with the ppl while they fight. For some reason, David was at the palace on the roof. He saw a beautiful woman and decided he had to have her.

He sleeps with her, gets her pregnant, then realizes that she’s the wife of one of his best warriors. He calls the man home. He tries to get him to sleep with his wife. He refuses bc he is an honorable man and won’t be intimate while they are at war.

Since that didn’t work, David sends word and had the man assigned to a position that would surely get him killed. It did.

A new prophet, Nathan, goes to David and tells him he knows what he did and as a result the baby would die. David fasts and puts on sackcloth and ashes until he finds out the baby has died. Odd to others for sure.

Oh. David married the woman, Bathsheeba, after her husband, Uriah, died. They had another son Solomon.

At this point, the house of God is in tents, the tabernacle, and mobile. It had been since back in the day after Moses freed the people from Egypt when they wandered in the wilderness.

David decides and tells God that he wants to build a stationary house of worship, a temple. God is like cool, cool, cool. But um yeah. Not you buddy. You have too much blood on your hands. Solomon will though.

He lost a child and couldn’t build the temple. After ALL he had been through with God (there’s so much in Psalms and Kings. These particular instances described are in 1 or 2 Kings. Wherever you find Saul, just keep going. David comes after him.).

I’m certain there are more stories and ppl. I have surely gone over the customary length I imagine these to be in my head.

The point is simple and stated in the title: follow instructions. Cuz if we don’t, untold and unimaginable consequences will follow.

Go be great. Someone’s counting on it. 😊

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Proverbs 3

*Summary of The Message (MSG) version*

1-2: Don’t forget what we’ve been taught and take the commands to heart because they will help you live a long, full, well lived life.

It is important to remember the words of the Proverbs, but also the “words” of our lives. If we don’t keep in mind what we have been through and what we have learned, we are liable to have to endure it again. Cycles. Frustration. Wilderness. But, if we keep our lessons, what God has done for us, ever before us, we can move on and experience other things because we aren’t needlessly going through the same thing time and time again.

3-4: Maintain love and loyalty, tying them around our neck, carving their initials on our heart. Earn a reputation for living well in God and the people’s eyes

So interesting to me that love is mentioned as something we should maintain, along with loyalty, and carving their initials on our heart. Why? Because love for others, and his love for us, was so important to Jesus. It is all through the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John). The Psalmist says they hide the Word in their heart that they might not sin against God (Psalm 119:11). God is love (1 John 4:7). The Word is God (John 1:1). So amazing how the Word confirms itself. It is important that we live well. Later, in 2 Corinthians 3:2, Paul tells us that we are epistles, letters, known and read of men.

5-12: Trust God from the bottom of our hearts, not trying to figure out things on our own. Listen for God’s voice in everything we do and wherever we go because He will keep us on track. Don’t assume we know everything. Run to god and from evil. Our bodies will glow healthily, bones will vibrate with life. Honor God with everything we own, giving him the first and best. We will have an abundance if we do. Don’t resent God’s discipline or take issue with His loving correction. He corrects us because he loves us.

The King James Version (KJV) says with all our heart. But seeing the bottom in the Message (MSG) version hit differently today. The bottom is the lowest part. It still means all. But seeing bottom means, to me today, with every single bit, with every last drop. With everything and all that you have. KJV says not to lean to our own understanding. The simplicity of the MSG version packs a different punch too. Leaning to our own understanding seems to speak to not doing what we know. Here, it is telling us not to be independent but depend on God. KJV says to acknowledge him in all our ways and He will direct our paths. This version is so much more thorough and intentional. Not just acknowledge Him, but also listen for His voice in EVERYTHING because he will keep us on track. This seems like it is saying be humble sit down. Hahaha. How great is it that if we run to God, we will have life and health? Giving God our first and best leading to abundance reminds me of Malachi 3 and the promise if we give tithes and offering.

13-18: Meeting wisdom is a blessing. Insight as our friend is worth more money in the bank, her friendship better than a big salary. Her value is more than what comes with wealth, nothing we desire compares to her. She gives long life on one hand and recognition on the other. She has a beautiful manner, with wonderful life that is complete, a tree of life if we embrace her. If we hold her tight we will be blessed.

I don’t know how much more even needs to be said. Wisdom and insight are so vital and important to us. We need to make sure we use wisdom and insight in all that we do.

19-20: God formed the earth with wisdom, raised heaven with insight. They knew when to signal rivers and springs to surface and dew to descend from night skies.

Same. Y’all. Same. But. How cool is God that He gives us what He used to create the world to enable us to live well and be in relationship with Him.

21-26: Guard clear thinking and common sense with our lives and don’t lose sight of them. They will keep our soul alive and well, us fit and attractive. We will have safe travel without tiring or tripping, napping without worry, sleeping well at night. We will not panic over alarms or surprises, predictions of doomsday because God will be with us keeping us safe and sound.

Being free from clutter and distraction in our mind, as well as having common sense, sets us up to live our best lives without stress and worry, without being tired and falling down. Duh. Lol.

27-29: Don’t abandon anyone who deserves help as we are God’s hand for them. Don’t put our neighbor off for later if we have the money. Don’t find ways to take advantage of a trusting, unsuspecting neighbor.

Hands and feet of Jesus. That’s what I thought. People say that’s what we should be as Christians. Facts. Jesus told us as much. Whatever we do unto those who need it we are doing unto him (Matthew 25:31-46).

30-32: Don’t have a chip on our shoulder looking to fight. Don’t shoulder our way through life being a bully because God can’t stand twisted souls. The straightforward get God’s respect.

I mean. What more is there to say? That’s not who God is. We are to be holy because He is holy (1 Peter 1:16). A bully ain’t that.

33-35: The house of the wicked are cursed by God but the home of the righteous is blessed. Proud skeptics are given a cold shoulder but those down on their luck receive help. Honor is given to wise living. Booby prizes are given to stupid living.

Reaping and sowing. Reaping and sowing. Galatians 6:7.