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Gone are the days of making things from scratch in the kitchen, with family running in and out, laughing, sharing the moment.

I wanted to make Halloween cookies with my friend to ring in the holiday the way I did growing up. I remember how Mom and I would make the sugar cookie dough, roll it out with flour on our rolling pins, and then we would use various Autumn-shaped cookie cutters to bring the cookies to life. Ghosts, leaves, pumpkins, even a squirrel shaped cutter made up the bunch. The homemade frosting was a simple recipe of confectioner’s sugar, butter, milk, vanilla, and food coloring. What a blast we had decorating (and eating) the cookies.

This year I went to the store to purchase the ingredients for the cookies and frosting, because I’m not much of a baker, and don’t keep them in the cupboards. As I expected, I calculated that it would cost more to purchase all the ingredients, than to simply buy pre-made dough, and frosting in a container.
I did the latter. We had a blast decorating the cookies, but it wasn’t the same as taking the time to make home-made cookies.

Sometimes I think we try to worship God quickly, like running to the store to buy the pre-made items we need for a holiday treat. We read a Bible verse here, pray a quick prayer there, go to church every few Sundays. To have a relationship with God means just that. It’s a relationship, and like all of them, this one takes work. More so on our part. God has already done his part. It’s up to us to meet him in the living room ready and willing to learn.

In the story of Mary and Martha in the Bible book of Luke, Martha is running around, rolling out cookie dough and pressing firmly on the Autumn cookie cutters. She’s dusting and cleaning, cooking and singing, but she’s not ready to hear the Lord’s message. Mary, on the other hand, knows Jesus for who he is, and sits at his feet, listening to him with an open heart.

Take the time to work on your growing relationship with Jesus. Feed the relationship throughout the day, every day. Move him at the top of your priority list, because you are already at the top of his.

“But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me.”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “You are worried and upset about many things. But only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better…” Luke 10:40-42 (NIV)