With Belly To The Sushi Bar

Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands. 1 Thess. 4:11

imagesI don’t eat sushi.

Actually, my husband doesn’t eat sushi, so therefore, I really don’t eat sushi either.  I do, however, enjoy it, but my knowledge is rather limited to that of a California Roll.  I know they sell those in the Target deli.  Once I bought a six count and felt extremely hip for eating a sushi lunch.

So you can imagine my surprise when Brent and I went to Knoxville’s #1 sushi restaurant for a New Year’s date!  The waiter handed me a two-foot long menu, filled to the gills with different types of — sushi. Sashimi. Nigiri. Maki. Te-maki. Takiki.  Hamachi. And of course, Jg.

Brent went straight to the “Hot Plates” which offered all things Un-sushi.  He wanted a piece of meat and some vegetables.  Good luck with that one.

But I wanted the experience of the sushi lover’s life.  So after annoying our waiter with my crash course in Sushi 101, I was left to my menu and a cell phone – texting friends for suggestions.  And without delay everyone replied quickly with a menu favorite.  Several told me, “That’s my favorite restaurant!”

For a girl from Blount County who grew up on Shoney’s, this was a far stretch of my imagination.  Any restaurant where “eel sauce” is the must try, well I had to take their “favorite restaurant” words in faith.

After laboring hard over this vast menu with over 100 choices, I chose – The California Roll.

Don’t fall out!   Risky,  I know  {grin}.

To my defense, I did order a side of eel sauce.  To try.

However, our double-date friends ordered  rolls with strange names and told me I could sample.

When our food came I felt fun and hipster.  I ate with chop sticks (for a minute) and took a bite the Soy Joy, Philly and Tempura rolls.  All very de-lish.

And the eel sauce?  A-maz-ing.

So.  This Shoney’s girl  graduated with an A-B sushi roll, I mean, honor roll from Sushi 101.  Much to learn.  And still so much to experience.

2013 our lives looked like the menu from this sushi restaurant.

A two-foot long, back and front page of over 100 menu items.  Some things done well.  A few done excellent.  Many undercooked and a bit raw.

A long list of over commitments and poorly planned yes’s.  We were a jack of many trades.  Masters of few.

The next morning, Brent and I sat before a notebook and a cup of coffee, staring head on into 365 days of do-overs.  What do we keep? What do we change?  What do we drop?  And what can we do better?

“Remember when we went to Houston’s in Memphis?” He asked.

Houston’s is classic American fare restaurant in East Memphis.  Total, the menu consists of 39 items.  Top to bottom, including sides, appetizers and desserts.

Everything is prepared with excellence. The menu offers eleven house specialities and each is mastered with intentionality and precision.

Simple. Superb.

“I want our 2014 to look like the menu at Houston’s.”

We began by writing down every “sushi item” in our lives.  From ministry, exercise, swim team, speaking, baseball, vacation, mission trips, writing, camping, work, house maintenance, you name it. We listed and evaluated what we had done well.  And what didn’t work.

Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands. 1 Thess. 4:11

Read the definition of quiet in the Greek Lexicon.  I did not make this up…

QUIET {hēsychazō} to lead a quiet life, said of those who are not running hither and thither, but stay at home and mind their business

The end.

No, seriously.  I could end it right there.  How is that for a Word from the Lord?…  Not running hither and thither, but staying at home and minding their business.  Mmm.

Since Christmas our family has enjoyed a season of simplicity.  Not because we are doing our diligence in living out 1 Thessalonians 4:11, but mainly because the weather is so stinkin’ cold. And it’s Flu season.  So we keep inside much more.

And guess what has happened?  We play family games every night at 7:30.  Have devotionals at 7:45.  We have been consistently praying for one another and for others.

None of this is the product of our awesome parenting {ha!}, but it is fruit of not running “hither and thither”.  It is the product of our staying at home.  And minding our business.

Reader do you relate?  Was 2013 a year of hither and thither for your family?

Granted, the weather will warm and spring activities will begin.  The days will be longer and we will find less time in pjs playing five-card draw.  But the attitude of our lives can still remain the same.  Guarding with fierce intentionality the simplicity found in this season.

So here’s a coffee cup toast to 2014 – the year of a less hithering and thithering.

We are revamping the 2014 Crenshaw family menu. Pairing it down to fewer items, but each done with greater focus and prayerful flare.  

And while our bellies may not be up to the Sushi bar again for a while, I am thankful for our New Year’s date.  Leave it to Jesus to use eel sauce and California Rolls to shed such light on our New Year.

Lord, thank you that you call us to a life of excellence and simplicity.  Not for our own glory, but to the praise of Your own.  Take our 2014 and quicken our spirits when we add too many menu items.  Let us “make it our goal to live quieter lives” full of the loudest praise of You.  The One who numbers our days.  In Jesus Name, Amen.  

Reflection:  How does 1 Thessalonians speak to you?  What “menu items” need to remain? What can be reevaluated? 

Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands. 1 Thess. 4:11

* Thanks to Brent’s brother for sharing the Houston’s analogy with us.   It has meant so much.

3 thoughts on “With Belly To The Sushi Bar

  1. Pingback: Spring Break at Shoney’s | Becky Crenshaw

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