Monday, November 21, 2016

Good vs. Faithful

The last few weeks have been challenging to say the least.  With the election results and a 25% layoff of my company, it's been a horrible blur and fog in my world.  Thankfully I was spared and still have my job, though many, many others do not.  And they lost that job the day after the election.

My woes of life aren't comparable to others who are dealing with life-threatening illnesses or other struggles of life in a broken world.  Yet to each of us, our world can seem hopeless no matter the gradation of our problems.

I've been thinking a lot about how Christians will say "God has been so faithful" when they get word I've kept my job, or someone's illness is cured, or whatever problem previously happening vanishes.  Somehow, though I know that is true, I don't feel it completely accurate.  Yes, God is faithful.  He was, is, and will be.  No matter the outcome.  God would have still been faithful if I lost my job.  I prefer to say God is so good to protect me from losing my job.

One of my pet peeves is how many single women praise the Lord from the mountaintop as long as they have a significant other in their life.  Then, the moment that status changes, "Woe is me" is the lamentation.  It's as if God fell off His Throne.  Yet, God remains faithful even when we - heaven forbid! - are single.  God is good to us to give us the blessings we have far beyond what we deserve.

A few years ago, I had a women's ministry college intern, Jessica.  I loved her heart for the Lord and she shared a story with me from her home church that has stuck with me all these years.  A sweet lady at her church was celebrating her husband's soon-to-come retirement and how they planned to have a cabin in Gatlinburg where they could minister to others.  Three months after his retirement, he died suddenly of a heart attack.  When Jessica talked with this sweet, godly lady about how she could go on, knowing that her husband's life was ended just as they were about to start a new chapter serving the Lord, she said, "You know what, Jessica.  God is always right."  I love that.  No matter what happens, God is always right.  

In this season of Thanksgiving, we focus on that which we are grateful.  I want my gratitude to be overflowing for the One that is good, faithful...and right.  Soli Deo Gloria.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Chipotle vs. Qdoba

From the moment Qdoba made its debut in my town, I've been a believer.  It was my go-to place and I would crave it periodically.  This past summer, their arch rival, Chipotle, did a summer promotion that one of my employees participated in to earn us free catering at the office.  In an effort to help him achieve the bazillion burritos he needed to eat over the course of three months, some of us helped by using his rewards card and visiting Chipotle.

Although I felt like a traitor walking into the restaurant, I have to say I really liked their food.  This caused me to ponder about my newfound love of Chipotle and my obvious betrayal of Qdoba.  Why did I like one more than the other?  And if I could do a pros and cons, who would win?

Chipotle's pros are fresh ingredients.  I honestly "feel" better after eating Chipotle and not so blech as I do often with Qdoba.  The food is cheaper at Chipotle (at least what I get) than for the same thing at Qdoba.  And Chipotle has Coke Zero, so that's a win.

On the con side, Chipotle's chips are stored in a bag pre-scooped.  Ick.  They just don't maintain that same freshness as the chips freshly scooped at Qdoba.  The atmosphere at Chipotle leaves something to be desired.  I definitely don't find dining in there pleasing at all.  It's like a warehouse break room or a take off on a steam punk casual dining establishment.  To go orders are my preference at Chipotle.

Qdoba, being my first love, has a lot more variety on their queso, which is sorely missing at Chipotle.  They have Coke Zero and 100 other options with their Coke Freestyle machine, which is a positive.  Qdoba's chips are fresh and often even warm making everything yummier when scooped up with a warm tortilla chip.  And dining in there is a much more pleasant experience than at Chipotle.  

The cons for Qdoba are their prices - slightly higher - and the food - not counting the chips - isn't as fresh.  Overall, though they are reinventing themselves regularly with new offerings so they do move further away from a direct competitor - or a mirrored competitor with Chipotle.

The jury is still out.  I like them both for different reasons.  I suppose I need to create a Qupotle restaurant and everyone is happy.