Monday, February 3, 2014

Some Like It Hot

My very first pepper felt like this in my stomach!
I threw up the first jalapeno pepper that I ate.

Those who know my love of all things spicy may be surprised to hear that.  Why on earth would I have ever eaten another?

It was a rite of passage for me.

My dad and his friend Troy would often get together over Mexican food.  One of our restaurants of choice was Ricardo's in Tulsa near 41st & Yale.  I can remember each of them eating hotter and hotter salsa and just sweating.  Neither would admit it was too hot!

As a family, we liked to frequent Mexican restaurants and eventually I began to indulge in the salsa just like the big boys. I thought I could handle my salsa pretty well and so once when we were on vacation, we stopped at the drive-thru of a fast food chicken place.  It may have been a Popeye's but I don't remember.

For a nickel, you could get a whole jalapeno pepper with your chicken (this was the late 70's).  I told my parents that I wanted one and they scoffed at me but I insisted.

Be careful what you wish for.

They gave in and it was a large green jalapeno that was slightly pickled.  I took a bite off the end and chewed it and swallowed.


It was like an explosion in my mouth!  But I couldn't really complain because I had made such a fuss about it.  I continued to eat it with my chicken but as I did, my stomach started to protest.

Pretty soon, I found that it burned on the way back up as well.

I didn't finish that one but there came a time when I did.  I still enjoy them to this day.  I guess I saw it as a bonding experience with my dad.  Today I'm slightly addicted to them but I guess there could be worse things to crave.

As we consider seasoning, we live in a time and place where we have all that we want available to us.  It wasn't always like this.

In the time of Jesus, salt was one of your choices to season your food.  In the time before refrigeration, it
Salt can make a bad meal palatable
 as well as ruin a good one.
was also used as a preservative.  Following the Beatitudes, Jesus tells the disciples, "You are the salt of the earth."

How do we as Christian disciples today season the world in which we live?  Do we improve the flavor?  You know, too much salt can ruin a good meal!  How does this metaphor work for us?

We'll continue to engage with the Sermon on the Mount this Sunday as we look at Matthew 5:13-20.  Check back here after Sunday and I'll post the sermon link.

In Christ,


The jalapeno picture is from the Plants vs. Zombies wiki and the salt picture is from wikimedia commons.

1 comment:

  1. Here's the sermon for this blog post: