Recipes by Matthew Berg

Steps and measurements, bullet points of to-dos with creation in mind. Beautiful guidelines meant only to guide. It is here that I begin, here that I write something of worth, something to heal, where I grow again on this journey of life. I look back at the penciled recipes before me, remembering these can be erased, rewritten, and that there is room to improve. Two cups of this. A dash of that and mix it all together . . . but do I really wanna mix it? What if I don’t have that ingredient? This is where I might have panicked, despaired much in past times.

In the orderly a voice rose in my thoughts, “Just ‘taste’ it,” so I did. To this dull palate, life entered with each bite savored, every action was meaning, was glorious! Freedom danced within as the “kitchen” became a place of great joy rather than dread. Hope spurred me on to create, and create freely. I “just tasted” creativity once again as I cooked, as I wrote, as I lived. The ordered steps became one and flavorful, became something truly beautiful and freeing! The dreaded task became a journey I longed to take, and take I did. I began to listen as the steps became guidelines within the recipe, became a welcome place of grace entered in. The mistakes and rigid ways were suddenly gone! Something was new, I was new!

Today I look forward to the process of it all, in writing and life I look at the guidelines before me, change these “recipes” I see, and welcome the beautiful mix of structure that is easily corrected, not restricting creativity and freedom but rather encouraging it! Here the boy and the adult work together in me and I live as I was intended to: not bound by dos and don’ts, only given a vision for the best possible good. I enjoy “recipes” now more than before, especially when I don’t need to follow them to the letter.

Photo of cookbooks
Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

Matthew Berg
Matthew Berg is a renaissance man: follower of Jesus, husband, father, and working writer from the Midwest now living in the South.

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