Three Orders of Fries and No Ketchup

Some fast food is gross in ways that prevent me from ingesting it but I get truly excited for In and Out Burger—like I used to get excited about ice cream cones.  Butterflies in my stomach erupt into a mad flutter on my way to the restaurant. Once I walk through the doors I can feel a warm smile shift to my belly that even the greasy floor can’t slip up.  My stomach feels happy with just the sight of a worker in a white-held-together-by-oversized-safety pin-apron who is carelessly placing potatoes in the slicer (aka French Fry Maker).  I’m going to eat you soon I whisper to my little potato sliver friends soaking in a water bath on the other side of the counter.  In and Out Burger is good fast food.

A good fry is always worth the calories. I’ve maintained a long-standing love affair with French fries.  They have been a part of my life ever since I can remember and they have always been there for me. And nothing could come between me and my fries, not even ketchup. So when my dad, uncle, and I visited In and Out Burger today, I proudly announced I didn’t have to waste time at the ketchup pump filling 1-ply paper cups.  I asked if my dad and uncle needed ketchup though… both said a definitive no.  And that was that. 

I am my father’s daughter.  I am my uncle’s niece. 

Within 10 minutes of my dad and uncle picking me up from LAX 2 days ago, I began to worry.  Would a week hanging with my dad and his brother turn me into them?  The ketchup incident sealed my fate.  I have never met anyone who despises ketchup on fries as much as I do, until today. No amount of intentionality or cognitive behavioral therapy would keep me from the DNA that has already built me. 

I have to admit—this front row seat to my family the past couple days gives me both a sense of hope and concern. Sometimes my family is all starting from the same common beautiful language and we’re the only ones who know all of the words.  And other times, I feel like I’m speaking my own language and I’m screaming but no one around me can hear any sound. 

It’s been a learning process.  I learned I have come from a generous family—one that goes out of their way to include and love all people, except for jerks.  I haven’t seen anyone in my family love jerks.  I come from smart-cynical-get-stuff-done-contribute-to-society kind of people.  I also come from bury-your-feelings-don’t-confront-protect-yourself kind of people.  It’s been a healthy realization of who I have come from and it keeps me grounded.  I love my ketchup-apathetic dad and uncle.  And I love becoming my own person. 


Steve Finnell | April 5, 2014 at 6:39 PM


Calvinists often make the statement we are saved by grace alone and by faith alone. This is in and of its self a conflicting proclamation. You can believe one or the other, but cannot believe both.

Definition of alone: separate, apart, to the exclusion of all else.

It take unbridled self deception to say "I believe I was saved by grace alone and saved by faith alone."

To be save by grace alone means that God does everything for you. Grace alone suggests that men have no free-will. Grace alone means that God forces men to have faith so that they might believe and be saved. Grace alone implies that men repent only because God makes it impossible to resist. Grace alone means that men are baptized against their free-will. Grace alone means that men only confess Jesus as the Son of God because God gives them no other choice.

Faith alone, taken at face value means men are saved by faith alone. If you are saved by faith alone, then you do not need grace. If you are saved by faith alone then you do not need to be baptized in water.

You cannot on one hand say I was saved by grace alone and then say I was saved by faith alone.

There is no verse Scripture that says, "Men are saved by grace alone."
There is no verse on Scripture that says, "Men are saved by faith alone."

The Bible says men are saved by grace. (Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and not of yourselves, it is the gift of God.) It does not say men are saved by grace alone.

Romans 3:24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; (It says men are justified by grace, however, it does not say grace alone.)

Acts 13:38-39 Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through Him forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, 39 and through Him everyone who believes is freed from all things, from which you could not be freed through the Law of Moses.(Men receive forgiveness from sin because they believe in Jesus, however, it does not say men receive forgiveness by faith alone.)

Acts 3:19 Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;(It says men need to repent so their sins may be wiped away, but it does not say repent only.)

Romans 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;(It says if you confess Jesus as Lord you will be saved, however, it does not say confess Jesus only.)

Acts 2:38 Perter said to them, "Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (It says if you are baptized your sins will be forgiven, but it does not say baptism only.)

The Bible teaches we are saved by grace, but not by grace alone.

The Bible teaches we are saved by faith, but not by faith alone.

The Bible teaches that we are saved by confession, but not by confession alone.

The Bible teaches are sin are forgive because we repent, but not by repentance alone.

The Bible teaches that are sins are forgiven because of water baptism, but not by baptism alone.

GRACE: Romans 3:24
CONFESSION: Romans 10:9-10
BAPTISM: 1 Peter 3:21



Post a Comment