Imagine visiting a restaurant and meeting a world renowned chef who is preparing his signature dish just for you.  His offering is absolute perfection, an unrivaled balance of tastes, textures, and aromas.  The chef’s specialty – a club sandwich.

Imagine having the opportunity to sit down with the chef and having a personal conversation about his passion for his creation.  His description of the club sandwich would be captivating, and your enthusiasm would intensify as you anticipate sampling his very best.

Now imagine looking at the menu, and after a few minutes deciding you’d like to make a few adjustments to the chef’s masterpiece.  Maybe you prefer ketchup over mayonnaise, so you ask for a substitution.  Perhaps you think raisin bread would offer a better taste profile than white or wheat toast, so you make a suggestion for something different.  Lastly, because of your personal preference, you ask this world renowned chef to compromise his carefully chosen ingredients for tofu turkey and soy bacon.  And when the chef can’t comply with your wishes, you ask him to “hold” the ingredients that don’t suit your preferences.

Sadly, when all is said and done, after you’ve dissected and redefined the chef’s best, you find yourself eating a ketchup and lettuce sandwich on raisin bread.  No resemblance to the perfect sandwich that was intended.  And because you’re not experiencing the meal the chef is so skillful at preparing, you are left feeling unsatisfied and unfulfilled.

Now let’s compare the chef to God, and the club sandwich to our personal, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing.  God knows what will bring the absolute best result for our lives – His plans are intended to provide balance and fulfillment and contentment.

The components with which God proposes to enrich our lives include unconditional love, forgiveness, restoration, mercy, grace, wisdom, guidance, peace, and joy.  They are all meant to be components of our personal, emotional, and spiritual club sandwich.

But too often, in order to satisfy our desire to do things our own way, we try to negotiate substitutions for His best.  We make suggestions for a different way – something more convenient, more self-serving.  We tell our Heavenly Chef we’re willing to settle for less than what He has planned especially for us.

So the Chef returns to the kitchen, His best rejected for substitutions and compromises that He knows will leave us hungry for something better.

When we find ourselves at a point of being unfulfilled and unsatisfied, we need to look back at the menu and identify what was intended (by God) and what was refused (by us).  Did we desire God’s best, but knowingly make a choice to the contrary?  Did we desire His blessing, but reserve the right to reject His direction and choose a different path?  Similar to a dismantled and overhauled club sandwich, it is impossible to experience the fullness of life God intends if we are walking in compromise to His wisdom.

God promises in Jeremiah 29:11 that He has designed a special plan for our lives – a plan to bring hope and a future.  It’s up to us to stay out of the kitchen and humbly receive His best – with no substitutions.

For more on this topic, please visit the Whimspiration Youtube channel “Faith Hope & Friends”.

Episode 8- It’s Supposed to Be a Club Sandwich – YouTube