Romans 8:6-11

Cooking relaxes me, especially grilling. I can taste the brats or the marinated chicken breasts basted in raspberry vinegar and oil, the grilled vegetables or corn in the husks. My lips are smacking already as my taste buds are fantasizing about juicy hamburgers as the smoke and smell rise from the grill.

Preparing it is most of the fun for me, except for one item: onions. They cause my eyes to turn red, tear up, and I simply have to stop often and leave the room. I love onions, so I do an awful lot of cutting and crying.

Have you ever wondered why onions make us cry? I read something recently that was an eye opener. When onions are cut, an enzyme called sulfoxide lyase and sulfuric compounds are released from the broken cells. When exposed to air, they react with one another to form a vapor called thiopropanal sulfoxide. As this vapor evaporates, it irritates our eyes and causes us to cry.

That was enlightening, but the bottom line is because of the crying, onions are the last thing I do in preparing the food. Yes, I’m a procrastinator!

My daughter Julie has watched me go through this routine all of her life. She is an outstanding cook herself and knows the peril of slicing onions. The kitchen folklore remedies such as burning candles, slicing onions under water and freezing the onions before cutting don’t work. She bought me a pair of tear-free chopping, mincing, dicing, slicing onion goggles. I graciously accepted them from her, and in my mind thought. “Sure, this will work.” Well, I have been wearing them lately to cut onions—after all, she did buy them for me to use—and guess what? They really work! I’m not procrastinating anymore. I can plunge right in and cut them whenever the recipe calls for them.

How often have we procrastinated about allowing God to give us life—abundant life that gives us real freedom to live? Some have lived so long with the idea that sin must have a total grip on life that they have ignored Romans 8. However, according to Paul, we don’t have to be submerged or controlled by the sinful nature! Now that’s good news. Paul said we can have the Spirit of Life!

“If Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness…If the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you; He who raised Christ from the dead also will give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit, who lives in you” (Romans 8:9-11). Maybe we need to get some protective gear that will help us to plunge right into the onion that is holding us back. What is that protective gear? Here are some ideas.

1.  Introinspection. Assess the true situation. Looking at the situation from all angles will help us to evaluate the true situation. Quit lying to yourself about your relationship with God. If sin has control of you, then you need to confess to God your need of His life-giving Spirit that can set you free.

2. Get outside opinions. Find trusted friends who you can tell the situation to and get their honest opinions. People can be honest. Find an accountability group and allow the memebers to pray with you about your life. If it is in need of improvement, allow your friends to be open with you without becoming defensive.

3. Ask God’s help for holy living. We sometimes want to take over on our own and forget to pray and ask God for divine direction. This is not just our battle…it is God’s battle. He wants to empower us to live holy and clean lives, but we first must surrender to Him and ask for help

My new onion goggles are comfortable with a foam seal that protects my eyes from irritating onion vapors. They are anti-fog lenses and offer maximum clarity and eye protection. They fit the shape of my face and come in their own storage case to keep them clean. The above ideas may help keep you from crying over your own onion situation and give you a victorious life!

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