Confessions of a Picky Eater

I’ll be the first to admit it. I was a bit of a picky eater growing up.

When I was a kid, my parents would take me through the McDonalds drive thru, and I was that weird kid who had very specific instructions about how I wanted my burger: no onions, no lettuce, no ketchup or mustard. “Just the meat, the bread, and the cheese.” (I still find myself ordering burgers this way complete with hand motions.)
I’m a little better today, as living in New Orleans will do that to you. My culinary palette has been greatly expanded!
Several years ago, Burger King created a campaign targeting picky eaters like myself. Their motto was “Have it your way!”
Burger King was calling out to picky eaters. We will make burgers the way you like them when you want them. It was a brilliant strategy, even if their burgers suffer from a lack of flavor.
The most successful businesses know how to cater to their customers’ desires and interests. They know how to win over picky customers like myself.
The flip-side of that, however, is that our culture has become entitled. We tend to think that others are here to serve us, to meet our every whim. We are a consumerist culture used to fast food, microwaves, and personal preferences being served at every corner.
Jesus, ironically, bucked that trend.
Think about it: here’s the only person in human history that actually truly was entitled to service. He’s the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. He knew no sin, held no grudges, and never had a moral failure. Jesus could have rightfully demanded to be served by lesser mortals like ourselves. He could have said, “I’ll have it my way” and demanded meet his every whim and desire.
Yet he said it this way: “For even the Son of Man [Jesus] came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45, ESV).
Wow. Jesus didn’t come to be served, to be pampered, to be treated like a prized customer. Instead, he came to serve, to give up the luxuries of heaven, and to pay the ultimate price for us.
The call Jesus makes on our lives is no different. As Christian believers, we are called to serve others–to make sacrifices and to give up our very lives for those God wants to save. Sometimes this comes in small ways, like letting someone go ahead of us in line. Sometimes it means sacrificing our time. Sometimes it means giving our money. Sometimes it simply means acknowledging the feelings of others.
Jesus is the model for the kind of self-sacrifice we should follow. We can’t be picky about who we serve or how. We follow a Savior who calls us to give up having our way in order to be part of God’s. The reward, I assure you, is far greater than the sacrifice.
Your interim pastor loves you,
Rhyne P.

Rhyne Putman serves as the Pastor of Preaching and Vision at FBC Kenner.

His day job is at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, where he serves as the Assistant Professor of Theology and Culture. (Yes, he’s the nerdy theology type.)

Rhyne is the author of In Defense of Doctrine (Fortress Press, 2015) and of When Doctrine Divides (Fortress Press, 2017). He greatly appreciates any contribution you make to his son’s college education by buying his very (interesting) books.

He’s also a pop culture geek who thinks himself Superman’s pal Jimmy Olsen. He also bleeds Mississippi State maroon.

More importantly, he’s the husband of the stunning Micah and the father of a rambunctious preschooler named Ben.