March 15th Lenten Devotion

Genuine Pressure

Matt McCaffrey

Matthew 7:15-20

I am among the many who absolutely loves my “Instant Pot” pressure cooker. In our busy household with two active clergy, sometimes the only path to a hot homemade meal, eaten together, is blazed by this simple time-saving appliance. A vast community of fellow acolytes shares information and recipes.

We weren’t always head-over-heels with this appliance. In fact, it’s not even our first. We thought we’d purchased a genuine Instant Pot about three years ago. It certainly looked like one. It had the special lid and electronic displays that are hallmarks of this little cooker. Still, despite outward appearances, it was not the genuine article. We grew increasingly frustrated as we tried to follow recipes. The instant cooker that looked so authentic lacked the features and controls of the real Instant Pot. No chili! No beans! No rice! No cheesecake! We grew bored with the four dishes we could actually prepare with this impostor.

Eventually, we gave up and saved up for the real thing.

I wish we’d been warned.

When Jesus came along, his was an epiphany that brought people into relationship with God. They flocked to hear him preach. They marveled at his gifts for healing and discernment. And, I’m sure they wondered at his words about “false prophets.” Wouldn’t it be easy to tell those who mislead from the genuine article?

It would not. But, if you’re getting the same four boring “meals” from whoever you follow, maybe that’s a sign of the “bad fruit” he describes.

God of Wisdom, help me to discern your life-giving word and works in my journey. Amen.


Matt McCaffrey is Interim Minister of North Madison Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, in Connecticut.

©2019 by individual authors and Facebook Narrative Lectionary Group.  This work is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

This work is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.  This means you may share this work only if appropriate attribution (to both the author of the original piece and to the Facebook Group which compiled it) is used, and ONLY if you are a noncommercial entity.  Any derivative work using this intellectual property must also be freely shared, as this booklet is.  Individual churches throughout the world may make copies of this booklet for their congregations in their entirety or may use individual pages from this book.   The full copyright notice above must accompany any use of this book, or any extract from it, as well as the byline and the name of the individual author. 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s