The Green Frog Blog!

Thursday, November 5, 2009


I went with a friend last night to Shogun's, a new Japanese hibachi grill in Dyersburg. As a big fan of sushi, I opted for a variety tray of raw fish while my friend ordered the steak "show." They were busy, so we sat there for a while. I was so close to the grill I started day dreaming about throwing a couple pieces of bread on the griddle and making myself a grilled cheese. I was hungry.

Our chef/entertainer was Kin. He started off juggling his spatula and fork in an array of amusing flips and clanks. He then moved to flipping a raw egg into the air and spinning it into his hat. Then with a squeeze of some flammable liquid onto the griddle and a lighter, POOF....I lost my eyebrows. The flame was so big it reminded me of my mother's episode with her fuzzy angora sweater and a wedding candle, hence her nickname Joan of Arc.

As I was driving home stuffed like a turkey, I thought, "That place is just a Huddle House on steroids." They had a lot of similarities: griddles, fire, spatulas, eggs, and direct cook observations. Heck, if the Huddle House cooks could balance a spinning egg on their head they could start charging twenty dollars for hash browns.

I also started thinking about how several things in life are simply modifications of something else: Shogun is Huddle House with tricky cooks; the tricycle is a bicycle with three wheels; the television is a radio with a picture; the automobile is a buggy with a motor; and sometimes the Christian is a loveless person governed by a set of morals.

I sometimes try to live my faith by believing I just need to simply modify my normal behavior and it usually involves a list of don'ts: don't smoke (love the candy ones), don't drink (I'm a Mountain Dew man), don't dance (can't anyway), and don't curse (often substitute dang and break pens). I believe if I am practicing discipline in these areas I am a successful Christian, sadly, even if I am loveless.

Two verses in scripture haunt me. One is in Proverbs and says hidden love is worse than open rebuke, or not telling someone you care is worse than screaming at them. Wow! Sometimes I laugh about this and say, "Well I should tell Taylor Swift I love her," but then sometimes I cry about this because I know I have squandered opportunities to be light in darkness with encouraging words. The other verse is in James and it says to know what good to do and then not do it, is sin. This is simply powerful...overwhelming to my spirit.

To me this means rather than a list of don't(s) dictating my life, a list of do(s) should be. When I know a friend is struggling I should call. When I see a child drop their ice cream I should stop their tears with a new one (gravity's fault anyway). When I see someone in the town gossip, I should stop and make them feel valuable. When I see good to do, I should do it.

Although Jesus was a very moral person, he was more known what he did do than what he didn't do, and when it came to rules or people, he choose people. When He saw good to do, He did it, and this is a higher law, this is more than spinning an egg on his head and cooking waffles, this is the secret to life to the fullest: rather than be loveless with rules, let love rule.

P.S. If you go to Shogun's, take marshmallows and suntan lotion.


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