Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mise en place

One of the most important phrases that I learned and actually remembered from Culinary School was the phrase "Mise en place" meaning "everything in its place". Having all your ingredients chopped, measured and ready to go is key to a successful dish. In many kitchens there is a prep cook or many prep cooks. They are low on the totem pole but really are so important to the success of the Head Chef and all the food that goes out of the kitchen.When a Chef is not prepared it definitely effects the flow for the day and the end product is not usually his or her best.
I use the term Mise en place in other areas of my life as well. When my life seems to not be in order, there is chaos. When I choose to sit on the internet instead of grocery shopping or keeping up with household falls apart(FYI-my chores are all I can continue to write):). I have to say I use to be so organized. I was an Event Planner for two years and that position really taught me that I needed to be prepared for what I knew was going to happen..that way when something happened that was not planned I had time to sort it all out. Many times we go about our lives as we have planned and that is usually when God likes to throw in a test or two. Now, sometimes I have to admit I am so not prepared and I just about lose it...most of the time I can identify the test and know something great will come out of it. God always has a great plan for us. You hear it all the time that God's timing is perfect. We have to remember that He is far greater than us. He works supernaturally and sometimes we can never imagine what great things God can do and has planned for us. Also, God is patient. Have you ever been in such a rush while cooking a meal that it ends up in the trash? Totally ruined...a mess. If you had everything in its place then it most likely would have a different outcome. If you had put a little love and time into it you could produce something worthy of Top Chef...ok maybe I am going too far. Seriously though when everything is going right in the kitchen and I am putting my heart into it The Hubs is always like "this is the best____ ever! It does the heart good. Wouldn't that be great if we did that in our personal lives with Christ? At the end of each day He could look at you and say this was the best day yet! Keep it coming! Instead of "pack your knives"(good thing God doesn't give up on us and wouldn't say that after one failure).

Daily preparation in the Word is key to a great relationship with God. When you are prepared you can face any obstacle that may come your way. For some reason I want to shout "If you can't stand the heat...stay out of the kitchen"!!! Ok, sorry enough with all the cooking metaphors and puns!!!

In Isaiah 40 God is comforting His people. I love how this chapter refers to the majesty and glory of our God. "In the desert prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all mankind together will see it. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken". Isa 40:3-5. about some preparation..making mountains low and rough ground level! Later on in the chapter it talks about how God measures "the waters in the hollow of his hand" and also "held the dust of the earth in a basket, or weighed the mountains on the scales" (vs 12). This would definitely comfort me. The most I have ever weighed out on scales was a few ounces of flour!(although the scale in my bathroom holds almost the same amount as a small hill...oh geez). How soon we forget that when we are hit with something we are not prepared for that we needs to turn to God for help. We can't do it all on our own. We all have so much on our plates...step back and let God be the "Head Chef". It will turn out much better that way:).  Mise en place:)