If the Lord blesses us, this time next week we will be going about our business in the year 2014. For me, it will be my return to work following vacation. It will further be my first day on my newly appointed interim position as the Director of the Women’s Center at Duke University for six months. A year ago, I interviewed for another job. I thought it went well, my skill set matched, but it wasn’t mine to have. Since that time, I continued to work my current position with commitment and joy. I had no idea that within a year, the Lord would prepare a leftover for me. A colleague transitioned to another position, and so what was left, was offered to me. It is a brief appointment, but it will allow me a different perspective. Until next week, I sit (or lay) like many of you in my pajamas, feasting off leftovers with dreams of my new job, and a new fitness plan in my head. *Sidebar: Have y’all seen Mary J?
This fried turkey, mac n’ cheese, candied sweets and greens for some reason taste better than yesterday. The flavors have settled and I am a happy girl. However, as the Lord allows, I am always mind mapping, and I began to think, these leftovers are something wonderful, but are all leftovers good for us? As I ponder through the FB postings of friends, a few are joking that the “sidepiece” receives leftovers of the man that is more committed to another than her; or the leftovers disguised as a “regift” to someone as opposed to purchasing a new gift specifically with them in mind. Indeed, some leftovers should be discarded and not stored. They are not good from you at the onset, let alone for time after. But, I would suggest that we consider leftovers from the paradigm of what is left when the majority has been consumed.
As opposed to “feeling some kind of way” about situations and circumstances that did not go as you’d hoped or dare I suggest, planned over the last year, consider what you have left. Perhaps it was something tragic, but you are still here. No matter how painful it was, you were not consumed! There is breath left in your body, and subsequently potential for moving forward. I believe that the enemy exists and is on his grind daily to kill you, your passion and your purpose; but I believe more that God allows events to occur to refine our faith and produce new fruit that has the ability to withstand the elements and be a source of encouragement to others. We cannot be whom He intends without trials. However, the trials birth into existence something that would have been difficult to emerge had it not been for the fire. And what is leftover after the fire, is far more brilliant and the value of it is priceless!
Leftover joy from pain, leftover peace from confusion, leftover strength from weakness, leftover compassion from pity, leftover love from hate – but here you are, with as my Pastor says, “with your good-looking self” ready, armed and dangerous for everything 2014 will send your way. And the best thing about leftovers…they can be used whenever you want, for breakfast, brunch or a late night snack; or for a new career, a new relationship, a new volunteer commitment, a new peace of mind, a new rededication to Christ, a new life!
Go head and get your leftovers on! And, while you’re at it, determine what is good and pleasing to carry over into your good success for 2014. You don’t have to fight anyone for them, or hide them in a secret place. Use them for the glory of God and he’ll be certain as in the Creation by James Weldon Johnson to say, “That’s good!”