Why You Need To Hold The Sauce
Thursday means one thing at our house.
I won’t say how long we’ve held the tradition of grabbing a greasy pizza once a week—that’d be too embarrassing—but I will say it has been such a beloved, time-tested tradition in our family that one of my son’s first words was ‘pizza’.
Back then, he hung from the crook of my elbow in his carseat as I paid for our pre-ordered pizza.
“EEEEEETTTTZZZZAAAAAAAA!!!!” he’d shout, his tinny voice rising above the ringing phones, the bantering employees, the roar of the oven. “EEETZA! EEETZA! EEETZAAAAAA!!!”
Once, an employee stopped everything he was doing to cock a brow at the little baby. Then he turned his confused look to me. “Is that baby yelling, ‘pizza’?”
Flushing, I gave a casual flick of the wrist, as though it were totally normal for babies to have an addiction to greasy food. “He really likes pizza.”
And it continued that way for a long time. The boy ate so much pizza in one sitting, his cheeks were stained red from tomato sauce.
So it isn’t any wonder that, not too many Thursdays ago, my son came to the pizza parlor with me and his baby sister to pick up a big ol’ pie (fortunately, this time, the baby wasn’t screaming ‘pizza’ at all the employees).
“All right, bud, I’m going to need your help,” I said as I gathered all our things together.
Eagerly, the little boy leapt to my side, ready for action. “What can I do to help?”
I plopped three containers of extra sauces into his hands. “I need you to carry these.”
Three sauces. Two small hands.
His jaw dropped in disbelief. “You mean I have to carry ALL the sauces??”
“Yes, that would be very helpful,” I replied as I slung the diaper bag over one shoulder and picked up the baby in her car seat. And also got the pizza. And the breadsticks. And opened the door so my son could walk through. And. And. And.
My son followed, grimacing in intense concentration as he stared down the full load in his hands. Gingerly, he walked to the van, taking one slow step. Then another. Aaaaand another. Careful not to drop what he’d been given. Finally—thank heavens—we were at the car door.
Is that what I look like when God asks me to do something? I wondered to myself, a smile half-cocked on my face as my son dumped all the sauces in the passenger seat, and then grumbled about how much he had to do.
The answer was yes. That’s exactly what I look like.
Every day, God plops some extremely minuscule portion of His will into my hands.
I feel its weight in my clumsy fingers, and almost instantly, my jaw drops in disbelief.
You mean I have to take care of ALL these kids?
You mean I have to do ALL this laundry?
You mean I have to wash ALL these dishes?
You mean I have to write ALL these chapters?
“Yes, that would be very helpful,” God replies, humbly leaving out the fact that He was the One who created the kids. And gave me an amazing, supportive husband. And provided our clothes, our home, our washing machine, our dishwasher, our dishes, our everything. And gave me the ideas and inspiration for my writing. AND opened the doors for me to pursue writing. And. And. And.
I follow Him as best I can, grimacing in intense concentration as I stare down the full load in my hands. Gingerly, I walk beside Him, taking one slow step. Then another. And another. Careful not to drop what little I’ve been given.
Finally, thank heavens, I reach the end of the day and let everything drop, often astounded by how much I got accomplished.
Yet, in reality, I hold the smallest fraction of the big picture. God knows I can’t hold the big stuff. It would flatten me outright. So He does the heavy lifting, walking beside me, matching my extremely slow stride as I fumble the tiny bit in my hands. Struggling to take. Each. Slow. Step.
The truth is, it would probably be easier for God if He just did everything and we got out of His way.
But, for whatever reason, He made us to be helpers. Co-redeemers.
All we have to do is hold the sauce and walk with Him.