A Parable of Yogurts & Warm Milk

Have you ever made yogurt? I used to do that 30 years ago in Vienna, Austria when my little family was together. It was easy. warm milkFirst you had a big pot of milk. But you had to heat it to just the right temperature. It couldn’t really be “lukewarm” (Revelation 3:16) but you didn’t want it scalding hot either. If I remember, it had to be hot enough that you could just barely keep your finger in it.

Then when the milk was the right temperature (maybe you had two gallons of it or 8 liters), you added just a spoonful of what was yogurt culture.spoon of yogurt Then we’d wrap it up on top of the heater and leave it all night as it stayed right at that “just right” temperature. In the morning I’d come back and it would all be changed. The tiny little bit of yogurt that I’d put in had “infected” the big container of milk and it had all become yogurt! Sometimes it was so good that you could put a spoon into it and the spoon would stand up because the yogurt was so thick and strong.spoon in the yogurt

It was like the milk had gotten stronger. It wasn’t really “meat” but it was more than just “milk” (Hebrews 5:12). It had been “infected” for good by the little spoon of yogurt that had been put into the milk. It was now more valuable than just milk, it had been changed. Actually it had good bacteria to it, it was healthier and it contributed to your health more than when it was just milk. All that was needed was to get that milk just at the right temperature and then add that tiny “culture” of yogurt. The milk had gotten “culture”, refinement, improvement, fulfilling its previously unknown destiny.

Could it mean anything? It usually does; that’s what Romans 1:20 says. I really believe that so many “milky Christians” are ready for something to be introduced to them that can change them and make them better. This can be especially true if the have come to “the right temperature”, more than just “lukewarm” but not really scalding hot.

But what’s that yogurt culture? Well, I know quite a few former missionaries who are more than just milky Christians. So maybe they’re not strong meat Christians but they aren’t just milky either.

What could happen is, if these “yogurt Christians” (who are few, far between and some are feeling rather useless nowadays) could find a big bunch of milky Christians who are pretty warmed up and ready for change, if these little spoons of “yogurt Christians” could just get mixed in with a big bunch of pretty warmed up milky Christians, if they’d mix for a while and let things happen, pretty soon that process would happen, just like with yogurt. A little spoon of one or two of “yogurt Christians” could transform a big bunch of warmed up “milky Christians”!

Result? Progress all the way around. The yogurt Christians are no longer feeling alone, useless and “on the shelf”. The milky Christians go through a big transformation so they become more nutritional, valuable and “solid in the Lord”. It’s a win-win situation.

And actually I know more spoons of yogurt than I know large amounts of warm milky Christians. Are you a lonely spoon of yogurt? Why not try to find a way to reproduce yourself by searching out some medium hot milky Christians? Maybe if they’re already pretty warmed up and the setting is right, they’d love to turn into yogurt and be more than they were before.

OK, admittedly, back in Vienna 30 years ago, it wasn’t a foolproof thing that every night the yogurt converted the warm milk. The yogurt culture had to be pretty good. Most often the temperature of the milk had to be pretty constant throughout the night. That’s why we’d leave it on the heater overnight. It couldn’t cool off. But it couldn’t get too hot either. If either of those happened, the yogurt culture didn’t change the milk to yummy, thick, healthy yogurt. Instead, the milk changed the yogurt! We don’t want that. But most often it worked the right way.

Yogurts! Find some warm milk! Fulfill your destiny! Warm milks! Move further up the food chain! Solidify your convictions! Find out your inward potential and be stronger and healthier than you are right now! Accept change! Seek it out! You need each other! “Except a corn of wheat (or a spoon of yogurt) fall into the ground (the warm pot of milk) and die, it abides alone. But if it die (gets mixed into the warm milk), it brings forth much fruit. (Or in this case, more yogurt!)” (John 12:24).

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