Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Not All Who Wander Are Lost

I walked right by this food truck in Milan last summer without trying a cannoli!

Have you eaten from a food truck yet?

I just hopped on board this bandwagon for the first time when I hit the road with my colleagues to buy lunch from two food trucks parked beside our office complex.

My coworkers told me the food trucks roll into our plaza every week, but they're never sure which ones will show up. They've sampled the fare from trucks peddling lobster rolls and Jamaican jerk chicken and fish tacos, so I didn't know what to expect.

But as I rounded the corner, I couldn't believe my eyes. It was as if the food trucks had aligned just for me since they must have known I was on the way over for lunch. 

{How lucky could a Francophile-girl get?}


Parked in front of me was Frenchy’s Crepe truck, with a full menu of savory and sweet crepes. 

Ooh la la. 

But even with a sweet crepe filling my mind, I first got in line at the Mediterranean food truck.

I ordered stuffed grape leaves that had a striking resemblance to my aunt’s stuffed cabbage rolls, although not nearly as scrumptious.




But the crepes were waiting. 

I ordered the s’mores crepe since it featured the most ingredients: chocolate, marshmallows and graham crackers. 

As I stood at Frenchy’s truck window and watched him make my crepe, it got me thinking.

I admired these food truckers. 

They seemed brave and resourceful to always be on the move, setting up shop in a parking lot, cooking and serving. 



They didn't let their nomadic state, traveling around town without a restaurant home, change what they are called to do: share their culinary skills and talents with those of us who enjoy them. 

Their wandering is actually their recipe for success.

But I wondered how they handled the unknowns.

Do they question where they're headed? Do they pack it in and give up if nobody shows up where they're parked? What if they run out of ingredients or energy? What if their one-man show can’t keep up with the demand?

Maybe the food truckers and I have more in common than I first thought. 

{Maybe with you too?}



We head out on a journey, ready to cook up a life filled with beautiful and delicious adventures. 

Then we discover we’ve bitten off more than we can chew and we have a lot on our plates. 

Maybe we're frazzled and overwhelmed and thinking about changing direction. We don't know if we should keep going or head to the next stop and park ourselves there for awhile.

Or maybe our days have become routine and we wonder how we didn't notice that our supplies are depleted. 

We’ve run dangerously low on faith, used up all of our courage, and now we’re stalled and staring blankly at the future, unsure what to do next. 



We wander but God calls us back to his side. 

We wilt in the heat from what’s cooking in our souls but God’s protective arm sustains us. 

We grow weary but in ways mysterious and awe-filled, God shows us his love. 

We walk onward into the unknown but God leads us forward, showing us the next step. 
When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. - John 10:4

Maybe what they say is true. 

Not all who wander are lost. 

And that includes us.




As we walked back to the office, my colleagues told me I had to come with them again so I could try the seafood truck’s lobster tots, some sort of tater tot crossed with lobster that they said was worth the walk.

But for that lunch hour in my Florida office complex, I might as well have been wandering around Paris, lost in my thoughts enjoying a crepe from one of the carts on the city streets. 

All that was missing was the nutella.



I'm having coffee with friends at Holley Gerth's Coffee for your Heart and with Bonnie Gray at the Faith Barista. Join me there for more posts from my blogger friends!




28 comments:

  1. Oh my...that looks SO good! I love traveling and just got home from a great trip with my family. Your blog makes me want to go right back! Happy wandering...

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    1. Meg,
      Wandering does its advantages sometimes! You can wander right into something delicious!

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  2. Oh wow ... what an analogy! And lobster tots? Let me know when and where and I'll find my way there.

    Without wandering!

    Super post ...

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    1. Linda,
      I'll keep you posted on the review of the lobster tots! I'd imagine you'd probably have some great lobster up your way on the coast! :)

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  3. Looks delicious! You definitely got a good choice of trucks, I haven't always been as lucky - but when they are good, they are really good!

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    1. Brittany,
      Thanks for inviting me to experience the trucks! {And for sharing my crepe!}

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  4. I'm always amazed at how you can find such spiritual insight in the everyday, Valerie. :) I never even knew a person can eat grape leaves, and I've never eaten from a food truck. That crepe looks yummy. This jumped out at me - "We grow weary but in ways mysterious and awe-filled, God shows us his love." Also the verse about how Jesus goes before the sheep. God is so patient and loving with His wandering sheep, isn't He? Blessings and hugs to you!

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    1. Trudy,
      You will have to start searching for food trucks out there in the Midwest and see what they're serving up in your part of the country! :) And I am so glad God is so patient with us, even when we wander!

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  5. i wish we were sharing a s'mores crepe Valerie. Or the lobster roll! They are one of my favorites. Lobster anything! This reminds me of what David says in the Psalms, "Thou has taken account of my wanderings; Put my tears in Thy bottle; Are they not in Thy book?" God observes and is intimately acquainted with the wanderer and the nomad and those of us who lose our way sometimes. Just like the psalmist says about our tears I think that God doesn't waste our wanderings. He cares even when it is our fault. He counts the tears and will let them be used to water growth and bloom hope and new life in us. Miss you!

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    1. Hi Somer,
      Sooo happy to see you around here again -- I miss you too! That verse you included is so lovely -- I wish I had found it earlier to include in the post -- I just love it and I will be thinking of it (and you) all week! The idea that God is using our tears to bring us new growth is beautiful too -- as are you, friend! xo

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  6. What an awesome analogy!! I actually had stuffed grape leaves for the first time just a few weeks ago- a gal at bible study took a cooking class and shared her bounty : ) And there is a food cart in the city that serves up the world's best chicken salad (in my opinion... maybe just the best in Richmond!) so there's something to be admired in these adventurous entree-prenuers...! We so often want things to be nailed down, brick and mortar solid, when God is calling us to think of things more like just staking our tents here and there...temporary... because everything in this earth will pass away but His word is the one solid truth that will last forever. How awesome that we can take that truth anywhere. ♥ Thanks for the mouthwatering imagery and food for thought today dear Valerie. xo

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    1. Heather,
      How did you like the grape leaves you tried? And the chicken salad food truck sounds scrumptious too! How beautifully you summed up my post with your words about staking our tents when we want solid plans -- but the only truth is in God's words to us! xo

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    2. The grape leaves were not bad at all- I think they were stuffed with rice and tomato paste, peppers and ground beef maybe? They were darker than the ones in your pic, so possibly she simmered hers longer. I went back for seconds, that's all I know : ) Had no clue you could eat grape leaves til then!

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  7. Oh, Valerie, you just described my life right now. Totally full, feeling like I've bitten off more than I can chew, and trying to trust God is holding it all in the palms of His extra large hands.

    I love a good food truck, love the people that run them, the way they bravely put themselves out there day after day not sure if it's going to pay off in the end with their own restaurant, but at least they are trying. Dream chasing is hard and requires endless trust and faith. And good food along the journey doesn't hurt ;).

    How was the s'mores crepe?

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    1. Hi Alecia,
      The crepe was chocolate-y good! Food trucks are quite the phenomenon, aren't they?! Would love to hear about your experiences! And I hope you plate becomes less full soon and your peace becomes overflowing!

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  8. Oh my gosh, I want to bring out my crepe maker and try making s'more crepes! "We walk onward into the unknown but God leads us forward, showing us the next step." This so spoke to me! In our wanderings too, we can discover so many treats that without Him we don't find our on our own.

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    1. Hi Lynn,
      What fun you must have with a crepe-maker!! I'd love to hear about them! I love what you said about God helping us find what we can't on our own -- that's so reassuring, isn't it?

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  9. We have loads of food trucks in Boston and it's such fun to try a new one. I often go with my kids because they love it too. And we always have a jar of nutella in the fridge. My family and I seem to be rather nomadic so I could really relate to your post.

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    1. Hi Rachel,
      I'll bet you have lots of interesting culinary options in Boston! Would love to hear about your nomadic adventures! :)

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  10. I guess I never thought of food truckers that way-I just want to eat! Yum! :)

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  11. Hi Valerie- I love crepes! how crazy to get one from a food truck! the only food trucks I have seen here are like for hot dogs and pretzels! that is fun- Thank you for this thoughtful post -feeling wilted and weary tonight as a bad virus has hit our home this week. We have all gotten sick and our little one has pneumonia :( --Thanks for these comforting words and reminders that he will sustain us! Thanks for blessing me!( again) :) xox

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    1. Susie,
      So sorry to hear your youngest has pneumonia and you've all been under the weather! Hoping you all are up and around again soon. I missed your beautiful words this week and noticed you didn't post. But isn't it crazy how gourmet food fare from food trucks is getting -- it's a great trend! Praying for some sweeter {and healthier} days ahead for you and your family! xo

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    2. Thanks so much Valerie!! I really appreciate your prayers and love! xo

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  12. Oh I love stuffed grape leaves! Thank you for the beautiful yummy picture! And thank you for reminding me of that precious verse that was one of my Mom's and also my own favorites: "...the sheep follow Him, for they know His voice." In this season of my life, it is so good to remember that I am not wandering on my own, but I am following my Shepherd! Blessings to you Valerie!

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  13. Oh dear, I think I left out the word "lost" in my comment. I meant to say, "I'm not wandering, lost, but following the voice of my Shepherd." I so appreciate your blog!!

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    1. Bettie,
      I treasure your sweet words and I just love it that the verse I included was one of your favorites! I'm with you that in this season of our lives we do not wander alone, but we follow and we meet kindreds along the way to journey with! :)

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  14. You never fail to weave instruction and wisdom into the sweetest places. Thanks for once more giving us a glimpse of His goodness in the everyday...and making my mouth water. ;)

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