Without water to dilute the flavor, and with high direct heat to caramelize the outsides, the natural flavor of each vegetable concentrates and sweetens. Dieticians can probably tell you the scientific processes that cause the sugars to creep to the surface and brown, but I don’t need a dietician to tell me this is the best way to eat fresh vegetables. And every summer when the garden is producing more than we can possibly keep up with, it is also the healthiest.
A few years ago, a good brother teaching 1 Peter 1: 6,7, if need be you have been put to grief by many trials, that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold that perishes, though it is proved by fire…, said that when Christians are tried by fire they are “purifried.” I think that was a slip of the tongue, but his accidentally coined word has stuck with me ever since.
I used to pray for God to keep my children from trials in their lives, but I got to thinking one day about some of the things we have been through. I bet you have a similar list, things so traumatic at the time you can even put a date on them—September 2, 1988, March 16, 1996, February 22, 2002, February 8, 2005. And that doesn’t count the lesser ones—November 1981, June 1984, and so on. Do you know what? We made it through all of them, and we are not the same people today that we would have been if we had never experienced them.
So, to our three precious children, I no longer pray that God will spare you from trials. But I do pray that your faith will be strengthened to see them through, that you will grow as servants of the Lord, and that your wisdom will increase with each experience. As your Mom, I can’t help but add, though, “Please, Lord, don’t make them too hard.”
This is the only way to account for passages such as James wrote in 1:2-4, Count it all joy, my brothers, when you fall into many trials; knowing that the proving of your faith works patience, and let patience have its perfect work that you may be perfect and entire, lacking in nothing. Those people understood the value of pain. We all want to lose weight without dieting, slim down and tone up without exercising, grow knowledgeable with studying, but it just won’t happen. Nor will growth in faith occur without experiencing some difficulties in life.
How many clichés do we have about this? “No pain, no gain.” “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” They are clichés for a reason: they are true. All I have to do is look at my garden and my flower beds. All those carefully tended, watered, and fed plants will die when the drought comes. Those tough old weeds will grow regardless.
As to my roasted vegetables, cooking them under high heat sweetens them. I need to pray that the roasting I undergo will “purifry” me as well.
Wherein you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been put to grief in manifold trials; that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold that perishes, though it is proved by fire, may be found unto praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; whom not having seen you love, on whom though now you see him not, yet believing, you rejoice greatly with joy unspeakable and full of glory; receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. 1 Pet 1:6-9