I would love to know your favorite rhubarb recipe. The following is not mine. My family enjoyed the sweet gooey goodness of smores roasted over an open campfire in our backyard. I savored a stalk of Rhubarb that I roasted on the end of a skewer. Savored might not be the correct word—I puckered under the influence of 7 calories of tartness.
As Rhubarb Season 2021 is winding down here in Wisconsin, I have once again experimented with all sorts of options to take the tart edge off. The first option we can look to is medicating the rhubarb with heaps of sugar. Effective, but it seems to defeat the purpose of vegetable goodness. On the other hand, pairing rhubarb with strawberries, apples, or a sweet fruit offers a taste sensation that is amazing—and even has some redeeming healthiness to it.
We all have “tart” experiences in life—losses, disappointments, relationships that sour, jobs that wither . . . the question is, what will we do with the tartness? We can cover it over and sugar the experience up so it is tolerable. Or, we can pair our tart experience with something that brings wholesome fullness, even with the tartness still present. In fact, the tartness can provide a distinct, meaningful experience.
We are restored for a purpose. Restoration is not necessarily sweetening the experience—it very well might be finding who God has placed in our lives to bring meaning and purpose to the tartness. It might also be that you and I are called to pair with someone else’s tartness to purposefully create wholeness. That is a key role for our churches—a mixing bowl of tart and sweet for the purpose of missional living, together.
Two Rhubarby things I would like to encourage you to consider:
1) Have a favorite rhubarb recipe? Please send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
2) Want to learn more about restored for a purpose? Register for our Virtual Conference Week July 25 to July 31 2021: Virtual Conference 2021 Registration.
 For a variety of options, see: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/five-ways-to-eat-rhubarb-29385943/