Traveling this week has meant I’ve held a number of menus in my hands.
Some have sported precious few (and painfully pricey) options. Others offer so many choices that I find myself overwhelmed and quite unable to choose.
The menu tells us much about the establishment, doesn’t it? And about its target audience – its clientele.
Imagine your life as a menu. Instead of appetizers – relationships. Instead of entrees – time commitments. Instead of side dishes – those things that add value to your life. Instead of beverages – those voices and words you choose to soak up and soak in.
What would your menu tell us about the establishment of you? Your target audience? The kind of environment your life is, in effect, creating for those who walk through its doors?
Is yours a broad-spectrum menu with minimal focus and lots of choices – a little bit of something for everyone?
Or are you clearly communicating a few precious and possibly costly options, reflective of deep passion for the fruit your life can create?
This week I’ve started to pay attention to the menu of my life, but I’m also thinking about whose menus I’m ordering from. Because there are lots of choices when it comes to eating food, but there are just as many choices when it comes to feeding my head and my heart.
Media – what am I listening to and what do those choices do for me? How do they affect the establishment of my life when others come into my space?
Books – am I basing what I think about and how I think about it on the words written down by others? Which authors am I ordering up my worldview from, and are the words I’m eating making me healthier or watering me down?
Relationships – how do I choose who to connect with? What do my relationships say about what matters most in my life? Do I surround myself with like-minded folks whose menus look a whole lot like my own (franchises?), or am I open to authentic diversity, even if it costs a little more when the check is delivered?
The prophet Jeremiah once said these words to God:
“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight.” Jeremiah 15:16
A preacher named Harvey Carey got me thinking this week… maybe I have been ordering off of some questionable menus; filling up on lesser words than the rib-sticking, heart-satisfying words of God Himself. After all, God’s menu sports precious few (and painfully pricey) options. There are more attractive choices at the establishment around the corner, and seemingly more affordable, too. At least in the short term.
I might make a quick dime or dollar with a fancier menu and enough options to please everyone who walks through my door, but I’m beginning to realize that my target audience is really an audience of One. And something tells me that He’s probably more interested in a few organic menu items made by my own hands than a veritable smorgasbord of half-baked thoughts and overly-processed ideas.
And if the God who enabled me to open up shop in the first place will also come in and sit down and eat with me, well…
He won’t have to knock on my door more than once.