Stir in the Sauce

Spaghetti is a family favorite for many families including mine. It is simple, tasty and let’s face it, it stretches. Whether your family is XL like mine or you’re on a budget (also like mine) or you find yourself suddenly needing to provide dinner for more than you were counting on, spaghetti is a proven stand-by to satisfy.

The thing is, sometimes you need to stretch even a little further and stir in the sauce. Here’s what I mean. Years ago when my sister, Tamara, had two sets of twins (yes two) and they were all little she was having a family dinner for a special occasion. I can’t remember what the special occasion was but, I remember Tammy’s words about her spaghetti. I had told her it was good and I had never thought of stirring in the sauce like she did instead of serving it on top of a pile of noodles. Here is what she said in reply. “That’s the only way I can manage a spaghetti dinner for a crowd right now. I have to stir in the sauce and make it stretch.”

I thought of her words this morning as I was doing some meal prep early while most of the house slept and as I worked on the dish, I developed a plan. You see, Daddy had cooked last night while I was out and there was about three times as much noodles as sauce. I had bought extra pasta and he cooked it all. As I sorted through entangled noodles I knew the first step was to remove a few parts that just couldn’t be blended in. They were clumped together and would be thrown to the chickens later. The next thing was obvious, I’d have to stir in the sauce. When even that wasn’t enough, I added some Italian tomatoes and seasoning and Parmesan until I finally had done all I could do.

Standing there alone with bare feet on an yet unswept floor that needed it badly, I stared at the noodles that had been transformed into what would be heralded later today as good baked spaghetti. I pondered that this was a good image of my life lately. Time and time again I found had way more pasta than I needed, some had not cooked properly because there wasn’t room in the pan and finally, not enough sauce.

How about you? Have you been feeling stretched lately, not enough, less than you need and inadequate?

It may be time to sort through your entanglements and remove the parts that just won’t blend in. You know, just like those noodles that get all clumped together and ruin the whole dish. Toss them out. Throw ’em to the chickens.

Then you can stir in the sauce. Be honest, is the flavor of what you have to offer being stretched so thin that what you are serving up isn’t savory at all? If so, you better find some new ingredients and don’t be afraid to try something you haven’t tried before.

What is in the cupboards of your heart? Has it been too long since you filled up with the staples every woman needs. When is the last time you had a facial or a long bubble bath? What portion of your day do you spend in prayer and with the Bible? Who comprises your support team, your soul sisters? Why don’t you consider doing things differently today? This week? This month? See if you can re-discover your full flavor and then, watch the transformation that occurs when you stir in the sauce.

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” Matthew 5:13

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