Marinate and Meditate!

By beholding, we become changed.
This is so true. What we view, watch, play, listen to, read or talk about impacts us and affects our lives at a deep level.
Firstly, I would like to apologise to the wise person who uttered these words as I haven’t been able attribute this phrase, but many thanks go to whoever was responsible.
I have been mulling over the above little gem, meditating on it you could say and the more consideration I have given it, the more loudly the wisdom speaks.
Alongside of my musings, due to various recent celebrations, we have had family and friends around for supper and although my husband likes to cook experimentally, we have frequently dug out ‘that recipe’. You know the one, the dog eared and discoloured paper it is written on is no longer needed, the ingredients, method and cooking times are seared into your memory and you know that it has never, ever let you down! Time after time it is well received and returning visitors request it again and ask how difficult it is to make it before asking for the recipe.
This is the point at which my husband starts to shift awkwardly from foot to foot, somewhat embarrassed as the simple key to this recipe is taking plain, everyday chicken breast and marinating it overnight. It transforms the ordinary into the extraordinary! I think he feels that his ‘genius’ is exposed at this point!
So, this led me to ponder on why and how we marinate food? Marinating food is done by adding oil or other liquid and infusing it with the flavours that you wish to enhance and impart. Soaking or ‘marinating’ for long enough can soften the toughest meat and additionally, when heat is then applied to cook the food, there is less chance of the meat becoming dry.
I am realising that with just a little more effort put in, there is a much greater reward enjoyed and that we need to use wisdom in choosing what we behold and what we allow to permeate us.
God’s word teaches that meditating on the Book of Law day and night, carefully doing what it says, leads to success and prosperity. We also know that whilst we live here on Earth, as Christians, we are called not to befriend the world. For now, we live in the world, so what do we need to be doing to ensure this is our reality?
As the apostle Paul wrote;
Book of Romans, Chapter 12 Verse 2 ESV
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
So how do we manage to refrain from friendship with the world? As Paul teaches here, be transformed by the renewing of our minds.
So how do we go about renewing our minds? Paul continues in Philippians;
Book of Philippians, Chapter 4 Verse 8 ESV
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
So we can spiritually marinate and meditate! We take our ordinary everyday lives and we marinate them in the oil of the Holy Spirit, softening our hardened areas as we purposefully soak up and absorb what is good for our flesh. We then also purposefully meditate on and behold what is good and pure, guarding our eyes, our ears and our minds from the pollutants that would contaminate us, in awareness that they surround us almost constantly.
Day and night, we keep our eyes on Him and we choose to feed our flesh, souls and spirits with the goodness, holiness and wisdom of His word.

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