“We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.” Isaiah 64:6
Like A Really Bad Cook (Isaiah 64:6)
My husband is a really good cook. Like really good. He always has been, from the time we got married.
I can make a mean pie. I can bake the ugliest-best tasting cake you’ve ever seen. But cooking a full on meal? I am average on a generous day.
I worked really hard the other night to make a healthy and delicious meal all ready when my husband came home. I cleaned the kitchen as I went, had the table set nicely, and we even lit candles.
My husband took the first bite and said “This is really good! Thanks honey.”
I forgot to mention that my husband is not just a really good cook, but he is incredibly kind. And patient. (and smoking’ hot, but that’s besides the point).
I took a bite after him with hope and, to be honest, some pride.
I don’t know what it tasted like, but I wouldn’t have thought to describe it as “really good”.
As my husband and daughter ate their meals, telling me how much they liked it, I sat feeling so stupid. The mommy mantra that sneaks up on me, the worst after a long day, of how inadequate in every way I am was blaring in my head full force.
And then, thank Jesus, He used my embarrassed stupidity to remind me of something. I thought of the verse in Isaiah “We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.” (Isaiah 64:6 ESV)
I thought of my sincere attempt to make a perfect meal for someone who is an amazing cook, and how short it fell. And I realized how similar that was to my attempts to earn God’s love, or favor, or forgiveness. It is so easy for me to get stuck in this mindset that if I served this person enough, I’d be in God’s good favor. If I did this enough, my circumstances would change. If I did that, I would be blessed, or holier.
All of our righteous deeds are like a dirty rag before our God-King, who is just and good and perfect (Isaiah 64:6).
The good news is, the amount of grace my husband has for me is magnified endlessly in God. Sure, there is nothing purely “good” we can do before the King of Kings, but that is one of the biggest parts of the gospel equation. We are sinners in need of a savior. We are the rebellious screw up that everyone is waiting to get their act together. Or the really bad cook making dinner for a great chef.
The other part of the gospel equation is the Savior of the World, whose grace does not meet us halfway, it meets us ALL THE WAY on our side. To the filthy rag side. And His grace is sufficient for us, sufficient to make us clean. To restore us to an eternal saint.
And maybe, to make me a better cook*.
*Who am I kidding?
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