Where’s the beef?

Forty-five years ago, Wendy’s Hamburgers opened in Columbus, Ohio. When you think of Wendy’s what do you remember: the signature frosty, their claims of “never frozen” and “hot and juicy”, or their amazing French fries? How about the slogan used from 1984 to 1986: “Where’s the beef?”

The phrase became popular when Wendy’s aired commercials that had Clara Peller, an actress in her mid-80’s, shout the catch phrase, “Where’s the beef?” after looking into the sandwich of a Wendy’s competitor. The phrase reminded American’s that Wendy’s offered a 100% beef product and that other hamburgers may not be so pure.

I like my food to be what I think it is; I want food purity. For instance, I want my scallops to be actual scallops, not other types of sea food that is cut into the shape of a scallop.

Purity.

The Puritans (including the Pilgrims) desired to “purify” the Church of England of what they believed was corrupt human doctrine and practices. These people sought out a new place to practice what they believed was right. Now, I know that we could argue that the Puritans were not perfect people. Neither are we.

Here’s my question for today: have I allowed things or ideas or beliefs into places that should be pure? Maybe I need to “clean up my act” in some areas. Perhaps it is time to give up that habit, eliminate that word from my vocabulary, restore discipline in my spending, refuse to participate in those discussions, remove that reading material from my home or my computer…well, you fill in the blank.

I love Psalm 51. Read it with me as we pray for purity in our lives. (This is from the Contemporary English Version.)

“You are kind, God! Please have pity on me. You are always merciful! Please wipe away my sins. Wash me clean from all of my sin and guilt. I know about my sins, and I cannot forget my terrible guilt. You are really the one I have sinned against; I have disobeyed you and have done wrong. So it is right and fair for you to correct and punish me.

“I have sinned and done wrong since the day I was born. But you want complete honesty, so teach me true wisdom. Wash me with hyssop until I am clean and whiter than snow. Let me be happy and joyful! … Turn your eyes from my sin and cover my guilt. Create pure thoughts in me and make me faithful again. Don’t chase me away from you or take your Holy Spirit away from me.

“Make me as happy as you did when you saved me; make me want to obey! I will teach sinners your Law, and they will return to you. Keep me from any deadly sin. Only you can save me!

“Then I will shout and sing about your power to save. Help me to speak, and I will praise you, Lord. Offerings and sacrifices are not what you want. The way to please you is to feel sorrow deep in our hearts. This is the kind of sacrifice you won’t refuse.”

As we prepare to gather together, let us start with clean and pure hearts and lives.

We can trust the Lord to answer our prayer. He forgives. He restores. He renews. He purifies.

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