Pass the…Soup

Faith is the reality of what we hope for, the proof of what we don’t see. The elders in the past were approved because they showed faith. By faith we understand that the universe has been created by a word from God so that the visible came into existence from the invisible (Hebrews 11:1-3, Common English Bible).

This is part 8 in the November Thanksgiving series, “Pass the…” for a listing on the other posts please see the index.

This fall, at First United Methodist in Sweeny Texas we began a new Wednesday evening program we are calling “Refuel.” It is a fellowship meal that precedes both choir and Wednesday night Bible study. Since it’s inception I have been the principle cook (that isn’t a complaint, I have enjoyed doing it). And, most of the meals have consisted of a pot of  some variety of soup.

Like most churches, we advertise these kinds of events and usually say what kind of soup we will be having in our newsletter and bulletin. Though I am not cooking this week, tomorrow night will be shrimp gumbo.

One of the first weeks I made up a pot of soup from a recipe I found called “Great Bean Soup.” Several people read the advertisement as “Green Bean Soup.” To say they were skeptical would probably be an understatement.

Still, despite their skepticism, they came to “Refuel” that night. I am not sure if it was because they had faith in my ability as a soup cook or if they took me at my word (in other words, had faith) that I put meat in my soups. Or maybe, it was a way to get refueled for the next day. I can’t say exactly what it was, but despite skepticism, people came and ate “Great Bean Soup” and not “Green Bean Soup.” ( I actually think green bean soup might not be bad.

I know that for some families (not mine), soup is a staple of the Thanksgiving table. One recipe in my soup file is “Cranberry Chicken Soup.” I first found the recipe in a magazine featuring a Thanksgiving menu. There it was titled, “Cranberry Turkey Soup.” I’ve already mentioned having it at “Refuel” later this month. People are skeptical again.

I met a woman in one of my previous churches who told me her family is one of those families. The kind of soup was even specific. It was always corn chowder.

The point is, for some families, perhaps yours, some kind of soup is a traditional part of the Thanksgiving table. I certainly don’t mind including it here as a number of the things we are passing this month are not on anyone’s Thanksgiving table.

When I was laying out my plans for this blog series I wrote down “Pass the…Soup” and made a note with it, “thankful for faith.” As the date started to get closer I started questioning what I might have meant. I am still not sure.

I do know this, for many in the world soup isn’t just a side dish for a Thanksgiving feast. It is a necessity to live. For most of my life I have not been a fan of soup. I am still not crazy about soups that are more of a broth base. My general preference is for cream soups. So, the soup many people exist on, I wouldn’t be a fan.

But for them, they eat the soup they have, and have faith it will give them the nutrition they need to make it through another day. And, in many cases, they are thankful even for the little they have.

The writer of Hebrews reminds this in our lesson for today. Faith is all about what we can’t see. What we can see came into existence because of what we can’t see. We can’t see God and yet we worship in faith. What we can see is evidence of God’s work in the world around us. Yet at the same time, we, by faith give credit for what we can see to God. Evidence is really not present.

Soup is kind of like that. Often times, there may not be much to look at in a bowl of soup. We might not see any meat or really much of anything else. And many people, accept on faith, this is going to give them what they need to get them through another day. Perhaps a good Thanksgiving project would be to make sure someone has a little more to go into that soup. In doing so then perhaps we would be giving a bit of evidence to the nutritional value they accept on faith.

As we sit at the Thanksgiving table, would someone please pass the soup?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Grace and Peace,

Copyright 2016, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved.

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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