When did Pulled Pork become a Thing?
Pulled pork is now officially a thing. It's on the menus of trendy cafes, restaurants and pubs.
But pulled pork is even more fun to make. I now have six BBQs at home - an Ugly Drum Smoker, Kamado, Hark Smoker, Weber Kettle, Portable Weber, and a Weber Genesis (for emergencies). In the holidays I relaxed by cooking pulled pork, beef brisket and ribs.
The principle behind pulled pork is the "low and slow" cooking method. Low cooking temperatures (110C/230F) and long cooking times (18 hours!).
The charm comes from going back to first principles. Charcoal instead of gas. Chunks of wood instead of pellets. And smoke. Lots of smoke. There's something therapeutic in watching puffs of hickory smoke wafting from the BBQ.
Our love for BBQ shows that cooking should be slow and not instant. It's as much about the journey as the destination. We prefer inefficiency over efficiency. We choose the slow-cooker over the microwave.
The God of the Bible is also incredibly inefficient. For example, why put Israel through the whole ordeal of the Exodus and the Wilderness to get to the Promised Land, when they were already in the Promised Land (with Abraham) to start with? Or why send Judah into Exile in Babylon, only to bring them back from the Exile?
God prefers the slow-cooker over the microwave. Low-and-slow instead of instant noodles.
But the ultimate example of inefficiency is God placing his people in the Garden, kicking them out, and then having to send his Son Jesus to get them into heaven. Why not just start with his people in heaven? Then there would've been no Fall. That would've saved having to send his Son Jesus and all the other messy stuff.
God also makes our lives inefficient. A failed exam. A career that went nowhere. A relationship that ended. Why all these dead-ends and U-turns? Maybe that's the way God prefers to work.
With God, it's as much about the journey as the destination. It's not only about getting our sins forgiven and going to heaven. It's also about following Jesus and being part of his mission to bring his love, mercy, and justice on earth. It's about being in the Kingdom.
That's why Jesus doesn't only ask us to make a decision. He also asks us to make a lifestyle choice where we follow him on a journey daily. A slow, long, inefficient journey.
But if we go on the journey, the destination will be worth it. There will be a slow cooked banquet for us which has been slowly cooking for quite some time!