Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Chicken Baked Potato Casserole---------In the Little Things

The Food Stuffs:


Made up of comfort foods, this casserole is warm and filling. It looks a little weird, though! If you have leftover cooked chicken, it's also a great way to make use of it. 
You'll need a casserole dish and a saucepan for the gravy. You will also need cooked chicken, so boil some up in a separate pot if needed. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Ingredients (based on a small sized dish for two):

1 Large Chicken Breast, cooked and chopped into small chunks
2 Large Potatoes, thinly sliced
1 Cup Broccoli, chopped into bite-size pieces
5 tbsp Melted Butter
1 Large Can of Cream of Chicken
1/4 Cup Milk
Cheese, Shredded Cheddar
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder


1.Place 3 tbsp melted butter in the casserole dish. 2. Spread sliced potatoes, as flat as possible, in the dish.3. Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes (or until soft and tender to the touch of a fork.)4. Meanwhile, trim the fat and any other undesired bits off of chicken breasts. Boil until cooked. Chop up. 5. Chop up the broccoli. Combine it with the cooked chicken.6. Season with garlic, salt, pepper, oregano, and onion powder. Trust your nose!7. In a saucepan, warm the cream of chicken and remaining 2 tbsp butter. 8. Add the milk slowly, stirring as you go until completely combined.

Putting It All Together:

When the potatoes are soft to the touch, spread the seasoned chicken and broccoli over the potatoes. Pour the gravy over the top of it all. Smooth to ensure that the gravy is evenly covering the dish. Bake for about five minutes. 

Topping It Off:

Cover with cheese and bake for another five minutes. Let this dish sit for about ten minutes to cool and firm. Serve and enjoy!


-Bacon bits or chives would probably be great as additional toppings.
-If you have leftovers, they make for great little appetizers. Simply refrigerate the casserole to keep it and make it firmer. Then, cut the casserole into little bits and place each bit on a cracker. 


Thoughts on God's Faithfulness in the Little Things

I've heard a lot about God "in the little things." Often the suggestion is that people neglect to incorporate God into the little aspects of life. The reasons vary. It might be not wanting to "bother" God about minor issues. Or, it could be simply not trusting the Lord. For some it might be forgetting that even small details matter. In my life, I find myself not surrendering to the Lord the tiny things because I, ultimately, assume I can handle them myself.

Asking God for every little thing doesn't align with the classic line "God helps those who help themselves" (which isn't in the Bible, by the way.) Practically, it makes no sense to stop and surrender to and ask the Lord for every single little thing. Even the whole "pray without ceasing" bit in the Bible is a tad confusing for person who likes to understand and follow directions literally (and that is certainly me.)

While I could (and ought to) explore the idea of praying continually, I need to fence my thoughts before they get wild.

I also think I need to keep in mind that God is faithful in everything. Including the small bits that I overlook or subtly, pridefully, assume I don't need to include God in. But, the Lord cares about the little things. I was reminded of this recently when a friend told me about a way He recently worked in her life.

My friend lives with a few other girls and they take turns cooking meals. From what I understand, she hasn't had as much experience cooking as her housemates. Every time she cooks for them, she feels under-qualified and like she isn't meeting expectations. My friend is a sweet lady. She always wants to give people the best. It has been a source of stress for a long while to choose recipes and prepare to cook. One of the last times it was her turn to cook, she felt that God asked her why she never asked Him about what to prepare. It seemed silly. She asked anyway, and waited for an answer...she waited until the last minute, when she had to buy groceries. God finally answered her, citing a soup recipe. It's summer time. Soup is not impressive. But she was obedient. To her surprise, she was actually complimented on the meal choice and recipe execution. God knew what was for dinner.

Maybe that sounds silly...but little things cause us stress and they matter to us. If we are in a close relationship with Jesus Christ, then we share even such tiny details of our lives with Him. If all that we do is to glorify Him, then shouldn't all these little details also be surrendered to Him?

I think of the friends I am closest to. People who don't know me well know a lot about me. They know the big stuff: where I went to school, my occupation, who I'm married to, etc.

The people I am close to know about what I like to do. They know what makes me laugh, they know what I like to cook, they can cite odd things I say, the games I enjoy most, and plenty of little things that stress me out. Because we share these things.

The friend whose story I've shared has discussed cooking with me for about a year. Ironically, I have to confess, it began when I asked her if she cooked simply because I wanted to brag about my cooking. How wonderfully God took down my pride and self-concern! My friend was struggling in the kitchen while I was finding delight in the same thing. I needed to continue to share with her about cooking, not to boast in my own discoveries but to listen and care because I love her. She is a close friend. We talk about the little things -and we talk about them in light of our Lord. I pray that the things I share with my closest friends I share with Christ too.

I have been thinking that maybe Christ wants us to not stop every two seconds and check that all things are being handed off to him. Maybe He just wants what we do....little, big, and everything in between...to be done in light of Him, to be done recognition that Christ cares.

God is intimate. Seeking him just in the big things is prideful of me. It also misses the point...which is not to boast a Godly existence but to know Him more closely.

Colossians 3:23-24: "Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ."

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