We were talking over a second cup of tea about how much things have changed. How we got by on incredibly little compared to what has become today's standard. Belinda said that she used to have a Mennonite cookbook, but couldn't remember the name.
"More With Less?" I offered.
"That's it!" She got up from the table to get her well-preseved copy and I thought of my own well worn copy at home. Clearly we both had some of the same adventures at one period in our lives in trying to economize and make every dollar stretch as far as possible. This was the book that had so often helped us do that.
I talked about some of my favourite recipes, including "Refrigerator Coleslaw" and "Brown Rice Salad", and simple but deadly 'Apple Crisp" while Belinda looked for a prayer between its pages that she had once copied down into her journal and had challenged her to wisely steward her personal resources for the benefit of all.
When I got home an hour or so later, I opened my own recipe cupboard to find my own copy of the book. Mine is missing the front cover and has pages decorated with the stains of ingredients of more favoured recipes. A flood of memories returned as I fingered the book and turned it's pages. I felt like I had been reconnected to an old friend. There are dozens of recipe books in that cupboard. One for probably every year we have been married - which will be 37 years in September. Some of those books have hardly been opened, while others, like my "More With Less" and my "Mary Moore Cookbook" have become favourites and literally contain the recipes for the staples of our family life over the years. I thought about how it has become so easy now, just to pick up a cake at Dairy Queen for someone's birthday, instead of opening one of these books and making a chocolate cake from scratch and slathering it with homemade chocolate fudge frosting.
I started thinking about another of my favoured books on another shelf - the bible - and how easy it has become of late to let it sit unopened while I rely on a quick drivethrough of a prayer as I run out the door. While my experience of God has become a fast food, instant gratification kind of relationship I have wondered why something is missing and God seems so far away.
This morning I will pass on the fast food and make the time to open the most precious of books. Instead of frittering my time away on the computer or reading a magazineI'll be waiting on Him until I hear him speak to me through His very Word.
I have a feeling I'll be letting you know how it goes.