26 January 2009

Tea Strainers

Greetings Dear Readers,

I love good tea. There are two kinds of tea that to me area pure delight. The first, and I will not belabor this, is sweet iced tea. This delicacy is one in which I rarely indulge these days but it is the best thing to cool a hot summer afternoon. It slacks the thirst, energizes the body, and lifts the spirit. I best stop there lest I violate my promise not to belabor the point.

The second, and much more commonly my companion than the first, is fresh brewed hot tea. Good hot tea serves as a balm when I am ill, solace in times of woe, and an excellent lubricant to good conversation. Understand that I am not talking about a teabag dipped in microwave heated water. A fine Australian missionary I once knew told me that American tea is an abomination of tea dust and herbal powders posing as proper tea. I believe she is correct.

I had the privilege and blessing of having a college roommate who knew how to make a proper cup of tea. He passed this sacred knowledge along to me and it has served me well through the years. You use loose leaf tea, properly boiled water, and patience. It takes time to prepare a good cup of tea and still at the end; all can be ruined for one must properly strain the tea.

Tea strainers are an odd thing. Some people use tea balls to avoid this step. I believe that this keeps the tea from fully infusing the water as it cannot expand in the ball. Self-filled teabags are acceptable if they are not overfilled. The best, in my opinion is to let the leaves sit free in the pot and use a proper tea strainer. This allows the leaves to open to their full potential, using less tea and still producing the proper colour and flavor. The tea is then poured through the strainer into the cup.

Without the strainer, the leaves flow into the cup. This has the potential of producing bitter and unpleasant results. Our lives are so like that teacup. We pour things into our lives steeped and loose. I wonder what others use as a strainer to filter out the bitterness and dregs in their lives. Christ followers are meant to use the Word of God, the Bible.

Recently my favorite tea strainer developed holes due to age and use. The acids in the tea ate away at the mesh until the strainer was no longer useful as a strainer. I have replaced it. So often people claim to use the Word of God as the strainer in their lives but they poke holes in the text to justify their own ends. The Word is meant to be a filter. It is a standard against which we may measure our actions to avoid taking in that which is not in character with Christ. When we twist and misuse the book, it always harms. When we read it, and follow the clear guidance in it to love Christ and all of mankind in the way he loves them, we can find great peace.

God wants to communicate with us and he wants to be clear. Perhaps you should try this method of filtering your life but remember not to poke holes in the filter.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn

1 comment:

  1. Christmas31/1/09 15:07

    mmmm tea....
    Waking up to the fresh smell of tea steaping in the morning is warming to my soul...
    thank you for inviting this knowledge into our hearts and minds on how we can enjoy the invigarating pure taste in a freshly yet pure cup of tea...
    now I know the one thing I lack here is patience...
    so there for I will ues your patience and enjoy emencially the cup of tea you make for me...
    thank you Aramis
    love Christmas