Mixed Nuts

Extra Fancy. Premium Quality. All Natural.
The irony.

I’m sitting alone in my office, alternating between actually working and handling personal things like emails. Someone walks into my office to discuss something that should’ve been addressed over a week ago, so I put on a happy face while thinking, “this wouldn’t be an issue if you actually read the email when I sent it last week.” Then I get an email from someone that left me both offended and empathetic. Then someone calls and tells me more about their sordid, confused and chaotic life. Then another work situation arises that drains me.

Sitting on my desk during all these exchanges is the large tub of Mixed Nuts I’ve been snacking on. Pecans, cashews, brazil nuts. Mostly I pick out the pecans, as they are my favorite. When I can’t find one of those I take a cashew. Sometimes it just doesn’t matter and I get a whole handful of whatever. Mixed together they all taste really good — like trail mix.

I realize, in a moment of epiphany, that we are mixed nuts. All of us, the whole body of Christ. We’re Extra Fancy: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27). We’re Premium Quality: “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10). We’re All Natural: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart” (Job 1:21).

So I sit at my desk pondering the craziness of the day, and look over to see my tub of Mixed Nuts. The words on the label jump out at me, and I say, “Yes Lord, we sure are, aren’t we?” I see myself in that tub, and suddenly have the ability to give grace and mercy to those nuts around me. And to give grace and mercy to myself. After all, it takes one to know one, right?