Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, "Go and make preparations for us to eat the Passover."
Parties are only as successful as the planning and preparation that goes into them.
Weeks before we are to have the families to Thanksgiving, Danny purchases a festive, fall tablecloth, new napkins and rings, and a centerpiece for the table. Splendid!
He finds a bargain on two, sturdy, wooden folding chairs so there is seating for all. That's a relief!
When he shops for the trip we took recently, Danny also brings home a fresh, 21-pound turkey. Enough to feed an army!
As he rearranges the freezer to make room for it, I have a thought.
"Do you think the pan you bought to cook it in is big enough?"
"Plenty big," he grunts as he lowers the enormous bird into the bottom drawer of the freezer. "It's how I'm going to cook it that worries me."
Danny is an outstanding chef. But, turkey has rarely been part of his repertoire. If it were up to this Italian, we'd be eating lasagna for Thanksgiving!
But, not this year.
This one has to be traditional. Just like the feast my mother always prepared.
Turkey. Stuffing. Green beans. Mashed potatoes. Squash casserole. Cranberry.
And, gravy. Lots of it, made from scratch.
Danny wants it all to be perfect. Especially, the bird.
"I'll just do some research on the web," he says, confidently.
But, after an hour of browsing, he is more confused than ever. The "experts", as it were, all have different takes on how to cook a turkey to ensure it stays moist, juicy, and properly roasted.
Different cooking temperatures. Different cooking times per pound. To baste or, not to baste? To brine or, not to brine?
Who will save the day? Or, at least, Danny's sanity?
Enter the quirky, the savvy, the unsinkable Alton Brown! Food Network's intrepid icon.
And, the man of the hour . . .
Or, should I say "hours" as Danny spends so many viewing and reviewing Alton's turkey tutorials.
He follows all directions to the letter.
And, when we all gather at our decorated Thanksgiving table for our meal, not a palate is disappointed. Danny has cooked the most delicious turkey (sorry, Mom!) any of us have ever tasted.
His careful, thoughtful, painstaking preparations make all the difference . . .
During this season of Advent, are you making careful, thoughtful, painstaking preparations for the coming of the Lord?
Let's go to God in prayer:
Heavenly Father, prepare us for the coming of Your beloved Son into this world. Make us ready to welcome Him with open arms and humble hearts. As we celebrate Jesus' birth, may we be ever mindful of His coming again in glory. Amen.
Psalms 37:1-18 or 37:19-42
2 Thessalonians 2:1-12