I’m teaching my older two kids to help me cook simple meals. Ruth was stirring a pot of beans on the stove that we had put together. Onion, cilantro, garlic, and oil all flowed together into a marvelous mixture. But Ruth still has a bit to learn about the finer points of cooking. As she stirred, she failed to notice the bits of onion and spice stuck to the sides of the pot, remaining uncooked and unmixed. Those of us who cook know how to scrape the sides down and return the ingredients into the mixture.
So I said, “Don’t forget to scrape the sides down, otherwise your ingredients won’t mix together and create the great taste we want.”
This really is a key skill in order to make a dish a success… ensuring things mix, that everything returns back to the center, so the flavors can mingle and complement each other.
And hey, that’s what church is like. We’ve all got to come to the center, mix together and mingle to get the great community in Christ we want. If you see someone out there on the sidelines, don’t let them get stuck there. We need them. Without scraping the edges and returning everyone to mingle together and grow, the church can’t succeed.