A fortune worth its weight in gold

blogIMG_5264Some people throw them away, some just don’t like those crispy half-moon shaped treats that signal the end of a Chinese food fest. 

I always eat my fortune cookie because I think the crunchy little munchie is tasty.

Although I don’t put any stock in the “fortunes” told on the tiny strip of paper inside the cookie, I do get a kick out of reading them.

Sometimes they’re funny, sometimes too generic and boring, but I still crack open the cookie to see what is stuffed inside.

I find it interesting that fortune cookies, according to Wikipedia.com, are mostly served as dessert following a Chinese meal here in the United States but not in China.  The Wikipedia article cites fortune cookies as being “introduced by the Japanese, popularized by the Chinese, but ultimately they are consumed by Americans.”   Apparently we eat the largest quantities of this crispy little goodie made of flour, sugar, vanilla and oil and about 3 billion fortune cookies are made every year.

So I’m one of those American consumers who has eaten her fair share.  When oldest daughter was a kiddo, we tried making our own fortune cookies.  They weren’t bad but not as tasty as the ones placed in front of us at our favorite Chinese restaurants.  We had more fun creating the fortunes to go inside than actually making the cookies.

So why am I writing about fortune cookies anyway?  I cleaned out my desk the other day.  Really cleaned it out – every drawer, threw out all the non-working pens and pencil stubs, old calendars and past planner pages, lots of junk.  Why do we save little gizmos and broken pieces?  If I haven’t looked for them or fixed the broken whatever by now, guess what?  I’m not going to!

I’m happy to report it was a successful cleansing.  I can now actually not only see the top of my desk but use it to pay bills, write a letter or even type away on my laptop on it.  Yes, that clean!

While purging the mess, I came across a tiny slip of paper tucked into scraps of notes stuffed into the back of my daily planner.  You guessed it – the strip of paper proved to be a gem of wisdom from a fortune cookie.

“Your faith carries you through difficult times.”  Not your typical fortune cookie fare.  Obviously, that’s why I kept that small scrap.

Some difficult times have bombarded me the last few years, nothing unbearable, (although at times it sure felt that way!),  just unnerving circumstances.  But the one constant I’ve held onto while making my way over the hurdles, through the snags, taking the lumps and bumps on my way has been my faith.

I am not an extraordinary person.  I have the same fears, problems, hang-ups, and sinfulness as every other person on this planet.  But I also have faith in an extraordinary God.

Sheila Walsh wrote in her book, Extraordinary Faith, that “God takes our fragile, flawed human hearts with all our hopes and fears and doubts, and weaves His goodness and strength into us.  Extraordinary faith comes from being in relationship with our extraordinary God.  It’s not about us; it’s all about Him.”

It is about God in us.  It’s about Him working in us to carry us through each challenging burden we face.  My tough times would defeat me if I didn’t have faith because I can’t summon up enough strength on my own to persevere.  God working in me is what powers my strength, His strength.

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.” ~ Psalm 46:1-3

That’s why today on Page 25, Chapter One, in my book of Opportunity, I write about fortune cookies, sharing what I’ve learned in hopes that others may come to know my extraordinary Savior Jesus Christ who will strengthen them with the kind of extraordinary faith to carry them through the difficult times.

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Consider Him who endured such oppression from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”  ~ Hebrews 12:2-3

©2011 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

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