Oddly enough, they recipe for today couldn’t stray farther from the tone of my week. This recipe is simple, in no way sweet–tasty, of course, but based on something I’ve eaten dozens of times.
The reason I stress the dichotomy is that this week was anything but simple and boring and familiar. This week I received possibly the most exciting news ever given to me, experienced a sensation I’ve waited over a decade to feel. I can’t express the magnitude of what it was for me.
This week I became a professional ballet dancer.
It was the moment I’ve dreamed about since I was a gangly tween with a doorknob-shaped bun on my head and not an ounce of control over my muscular system. It’s what my family and friends and I prayed would come for years. It’s what prompted me to leave my home city, brought me to Pittsburgh, kept me pushing through auditions when it seemed like nothing but rejection was in my future. It felt like 17 years of my life all led up to those 30 seconds one Wednesday in April. The day I took the contract, held it in my hands, forgot to actually open it for another few hours because I was so in shock, and took the step from student to employee with the sign of a pen was something I’d played out in my mind more times than I can quantify. Most of those times ended in frustration, fear it would forever remain there in my mind, only a daydream.
Until it wasn’t.
It hasn’t in any way registered with me yet, and I don’t think it will for quite some time. Within a matter of hours, I went from anxiously staring out of the window of the studio with the painful weight on my heart that I might not be doing this next year, to suddenly having the only job I’ve ever truly wanted. The gratitude I feel for my parents who’ve never once hesitated in their support for me, my wonderful sister who always Facetimes her way into my life at all the right times, all other family and friends, my instructors, peers, mentors–it’s immense. I can’t thank them enough. Ever.
And of course the most significant reason I’m writing this is God. Though I would have argued it vehemently in the past, there’s no way I would have been ready for this job two years, even one year ago. God knew that. He brought me through physical and mental pain, spiritual growth, and LOTS of failure, because he knew what I needed so much more than I did. He knows me better than I do and knows everyone and everything better than any person ever will.
It really is so easy to forget that fact. I’ll admit that it wasn’t even two days after God provided me with everything I’ve asked for that I began worrying about the future, about pain, about losing what I’d just received. Believe me, I realize how ridiculous it is. Unfortunately it’s the truth, and I don’t want to pretend that I suddenly lost my humanity when my dreams fell in my lap. Unfortunately my ability to trust God is not anywhere near as drastic and momentous as His goodness towards me. It’s a daily lesson, a process that I’m well into but far far from completing.
So maybe my week really was a little bit like my fries.
Because in comparison to the grace, forgiveness, provision, love, guidance, power, and sacrifice of God, everything that happens to me, around me, for me, seems simple. The thing that I thought from when I was a kid would complete my life, would resolve all complications, would provide all the peace and security and happiness I’d always imagined… didn’t. But how could it, when it’s just a job? This is the most exciting thing that’s ever happened in my life, and I don’t have words that explain how happy it makes me. But it’s not eternal, it’s not God.
Thank You, Jesus, for being all of the things that even my wildest dreams can’t be. Thank You for being so much better than french fries.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Salt and Vinegar Baked Fries (V)(GF)
- 2 medium potatoes
- 2-3 cups water
- 2-3 cups white vinegar
- olive oil, preferably spray
- spray bottle
- Cut the potatoes into strips; you do not need to peel them unless you don’t like potato skin.
- Place the cut potatoes in a bowl and cover with water. Allow to soak for 30 minutes.
- Strain and lightly pat them dry.
- Place back in the bowl, and cover with vinegar. Allow to soak for another 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 400°F.
- Strain fries again; dry thoroughly this time.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread fries out on paper, being careful not to overcrowd the pan.
- Spray the fries lightly with olive oil, and mix to coat them evenly. Spread them out again.
- Bake for 25 minutes, stirring fries once halfway.
- Spray fries with vinegar, and sprinkle with salt. Bake again for 5 minutes, or until golden and crispy.
- Enjoy immediately!