Friday, April 30, 2010

The Gospel and Vermont Pure Dark Amber Maple Syrup

This is a snip from my current book in progress, titled for the time being Gospel Wakefulness:
The divinely entertained heart of gospel wakefulness finds itself daydreaming about the gospel constantly. It hardly needs prompting. This “autopilot” gospel-centrality is the result of gospel wakefulness itself. It comes from tasting and seeing that the Lord is good.

All Christians have tasted that the Lord is good. Most Christians believe the Lord is good. But fewer and fewer it seems have seen in their tasting that the Lord is good.

When I moved to Vermont I heard a lot about the maple syrup here. I thought I had had maple syrup before. It turns out I had only engaged in a corn syrup masquerade. Aunt Jemima, Mrs. Butterworth -- all shams. (Those probably aren’t even their real names.) It wasn’t until I actually tasted 100% pure, dark amber Vermont maple syrup that I “saw” what I had only heard about before. And now -- this is the key -- I will not have any other kind of syrup (except under protest). It is too late. I will not go back. I’ve tasted the goodness and lost my taste for the pale imitations. Unlike the boy of C.S. Lewis’s parable, I have had the holiday at sea, so making the mud pies has lost all its luster.


zach hoag said...

I am glad you are wakeful, my friend. As with syrup, so with the gospel. Truth to live by.

Buck said...


It is sort of the same difference as Green Mountain "Nantucket Blend" and Folger's Coffee.

No comparison!

Anonymous said...

How true! Beautiful!

Snacks from the cruise buffet said...

[and I've had the same experienced with fresh-squeezed orange juice]

prin said...

Being from Quebec, I never knew there were people in the world who didn't know that Aunt Jemima was crappy. :D

I think the syrup is a good analogy too because of the process needed to make it. You can fake syrup by liquefying sugar and it'll look like syrup and it'll coat your pancakes, but without the hard work and knowledge that it takes to get the maple syrup, it's just not the same. If a tree is a person, you tap the soul, pull out the good and the good has to be processed and boiled down until it's thick and pure. You can cut corners and fake it, but you'll know it's fake, God will know it's fake and the pancakes won't taste nearly as good as they could taste.

Or, in another way, if God is the tree, He's right there and so often, we just choose to rely on fake, meaningless things instead of tapping into Him.

Golden analogy, I say.:D

Anonymous said...

Having been reduced to the fake stuff during a long period of transition, we are so very happy to once again enjoy real maple syrup.
Great metaphor!