Today I want to start a special focus on SPRING BREAK for two reasons: 1) I am tired of gray, cloudy weather and homework, and my heart is just aching for SPRING BREAK! 2) I think it's harder than ever for students today to stay on God's path when our culture is lobbing bombs of temptation, setting subtle traps of distraction, and offering alluring sin options. For each of the next six days (Tuesday thru Sunday) I want to focus on one of Six Truths Students Need to Know. As I've been thinking and praying over them, it's funny how many of them also apply to grown ups ... you know, people who are supposed to be all mature and wise. ;)
But before I give you the "S" that begins wonderful SPRING, I have to acknowledge that it IS Tasty Tuesday and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, and while I could skip this week, I actually have a suggestion for a way to get students (that's middle school, high school, and college) to eat .... CAULIFLOWER!
Personally, I always thought God made cauliflower to give us motivation to like broccoli, but last year my mom made it this way, and I've had a change of heart. Not only that, but my tween & teen love it! My almost 13 yr old son even asked for a triple batch for his birthday, & I am NOT making that up.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Cut cauliflower into flat slabs, & lay them onto a rimmed baking sheet. When the sheet is covered, brush olive oil all over the cauliflower and sprinkle it with sea salt.
Bake the cauliflower for about 35 minutes. Carefully flip the cauliflower over (no need to re-brush) & let it bake another 10 min. You want it to be slightly brown, but not dark. The browning pieces are prime - watch out: kids will eventually fight over the best pieces with their forks! Have first aid on hand.
Ration out the portions to those around the table, and insist they eat the other food groups too. ENJOY!
Now to the first of Six Truths Students Need to Know ... "S" is for SECURITY. Students today find our world offers very little security. More and more find their home, once giving a sense of stability and safety, is not at all steady or solid. Often, kids experience their life being shaken by factors such as undependable relationships, transient lifestyles, and changes in custody agreements. They are inundated like never before with media, bombarding them with images of shifting fads in appearance, trends in entertainment, and connections with people that are hard to trust and control. They are confused and find themselves left wondering if there is any way to feel secure.
Our kids need to hear that there IS something they can depend on, something that does not change. Kids don't need parents who will be their god, but they need parents who will point them to God. When kids are searching for some point of reference for truth, we can show them that God's truth does not change, and His nature is to be trusted. James 1:17 says that He "does not change like shifting shadows."
Among their peers they often find that acceptance is NOT unconditional, and relationships are NOT often characterized by loyalty, trust, and sacrifice. Most things in life can be lost, but the forgiveness offered by our loving Heavenly Father is not retractable: "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus," Romans 8:1-2.
Thousands of young people will flood the beaches and resorts on spring break trips, and many will make disastrous decisions in their search for someone or something to make them feel secure. Before they get there and are left groping in a dark world, let's make it clear that there is SECURITY to be found in Jesus Christ ... and throw in a little cauliflower to butter them up (no kidding!) for the chat. :)
Join me again tomorrow for the "P" in SPRING. Any ideas?