Yes, I know–the title for this one is quite the mouthful isn’t it? Before I dish out the main course, let me set the table for you. (I make no apologies for this being too corny.)
“Pickles of Partnership” was a game quest that my husband Andrew was working on the day I began writing this piece. It comes from the online game Final Fantasy XIV.
“Oh!” I happily exclaimed when Andrew uttered these three puckeringly perfect words. “I need that for my story!”
To this he quickly quipped, “It’s all in the dill-ivery.”(You may throw rotten tomatoes at us if you must. This ones going to be a bit of a food fight.)
This particular day didn’t begin so hot! In fact, we got off to a rip roaring start when I, apparently, relished a good old fashioned fight. Righteousness.
I say old fashioned because it’s actually quite rare for us to fight, and when we do disagree, it’s pretty mild. Thankfully, more often than not, we both have bigger fish to fry.
What incited our family fued, however, was that Andrew wasn’t interested in listening to something that I was excited to share! (Forshame, right?)
To be fair, I’ve been known to be less than attentive myself, especially when Andrew’s talking about anything that I have absolutely no interest in, or when he repeatedly comes to tell me a story while I’m trying to write. It’s the “repeatedly” that eventually topples the waffles.
On occasion we may irritate or frustrate one another, but you bet dollars to doughnuts that we love one another to the moonpie and back.
Related Post: Who Says Christians Can’t Fight
When a fight gets going, and things become heated, a simmer can quickly turn into a rolling boil. Righteousness
Both parties want to be heard, and both parties know that the other party isn’t really hearing what’s being said! (Does this sound familiar?)
The pernicious pickles of partnership are the detrimental problems we cause as a result of our unwillingness to listen and then adjust accordingly–that is, our continual choosing to be inattentive and immovable. Pride plays a big part in this.
We can fail to be less than attentive to our Creator as well.
We’re a stubborn bunch of coconuts. Being that our attention span is the size of a gherkin, anything that we deem unworthy of our time, or too difficult to swallow, is soon washed down by what we’d prefer to direct our attention towards instead.
Jesus disapproves of indifference.
“I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.” –Revelation 3:15-16 NLT
Scripture refers to indifference as being dull of hearing. This means to be slothful, careless in attention and unable to comprehend.
“We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” –Hebrews 5:11-14 NLT
“He has most need of Righteousness that least wants it” –Thomas Watson
We have some prepwork to do.
Here’s another tasty tidbit: though prepwork isn’t recognized in any dictionary, it’s a slang term derived from groundwork: preparation made before hand.
Jesus did the groundwork before His ascension to heaven, leaving behind those who would continue His work. (His disciples) What legacy will we, as his disciples, leave behind when we no longer walk upon the earth? (1 Corinthians 3:8-11 NLT)
“Declare His glory among the nations, His marvelous deeds among all peoples.” –Psalm 96:3 NLT
What do you hunger and thirst for the most?
If we don’t hunger and thirst for righteousness we allow the word of God to go stale in our lives. As famine can shrink one’s appetite and ability to receive nourishment, choosing to forego God’s daily bread and water can do the same.
We lose our appetite for righteousness when we satisfy our hunger for earthly things instead. More often than not, the evil that we really need to shun is our own indifference. It’s in our best interest, as well as those whom we love, that we fill up on the word of God and listen to the Holy Spirit.
“We may eat steak or our favorite pie until we can eat no more, yet our taste for those things continues and even increases. It is the very satisfaction that makes us want more. We want to eat more of those things because they are so satisfying. The person who genuinely hungers and thirsts for God’s righteousness finds it so satisfying that he wants more and more.” –John MacArthur
“Having been born into the family of God you are born with a hunger, in fact in many cases an almost insatiable hunger. There is a built-in desire and drive and longing for growth.” –John MacAurthur
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” –Matthew 5:6