Raised in a Barn

After School Cookies

Back home on the farm, I was the ‘official’ cookie maker. That is, it was my job to keep the cookie jar filled with cookies. I didn’t mind; baking cookies was one of my favorite past times. And I was pretty good at it, if I don’t say so myself. 🙂  I was told once by a young boy I was watching that my cookies were “better than homemade”. Now you can’t beat that with a stick.

green tupperware bowl

Cookies were an important commodity around our place. It was a major crime, I believe, to allow the cookie jar to become empty. When I made cookies, it was no simple task. It was a several hour job. To give you an idea.. I think the recipe called for a pound of butter and  8 cups of flour! We have an extra large Tupperware mixing bowl that I used. It looked alot like this one.

Speaking of cookie jars, my After School Cookiesmom once won a “year’s supply” of  Nestle Chocolate Chips by writing a essay about our cookie jar! This particular cookie jar was shaped like a one room school house and had printed on it “After School Cookies”. The lid was the belfry and , you guessed it, the bell rang when you lifted the lid. No sneaking in this cookie jar!

You’ll note I put quotes around “year’s supply”. I don’t think Nestle’s had any idea how many chocolate chips a family farm could go through in a year. Well, they had their limit which was fine; but I’m pretty sure they didn’t last for a year!. We surely enjoyed a few chocolate chip cookies on their behalf!

That looks like about a 10 cookie field!
That looks like about a 10 cookie field!

To give you an idea about how many cookies a family farm like ours could go through, the guys would grab a few every time they walked through the kitchen, I think. I know we often heard the school bell ringing. And it wasn’t just after school.  My older brother used to measure the fields by the number of cookies one can eat while working the field. The more acreage, the more cookies needed! I heard him say more that once “Let’s see, that is about a 10-cookie field!”

I did enjoy baking them and sharing their enjoyment. And that talent extended into my adult life for the folks I worked with and eventually my husband and children. When I was single, I still wanted to bake cookies, so I would make them (a much smaller batch of course) and take them to work. I would place them in the break room. as soon as the word got out, there was a mad dash to the break room. It seemed you could never make enough.

It has always been a joy for me to bake.There is nothing like having folks love your baking and wanting more of it. And there is nothing like a craving for a good cookie or two. But let’s think a moment about what we should be hungering for.  When we eat cookies, we always have to come back for more because we are never fully satisfied. We eat one and we keeping thinking about those cookies and how we have to have another. Recent studies are now showing the sugar is what causes us to want more. Butwhat we need to want more of is God and his righteousness. Matthew 5:6 says,

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.

Cookies, or any food, for that matter is never enough. It only satisfies for a short time. … only a few hours really .. if we’re lucky. But God is the only one who can fill that empty space inside us that we are all longing for. Listen to the words of Isaiah ..

Ho! Everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat. Yes come, buy … without money and without price. Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in abundance (Isaiah 55:1-2).

And the prophet Jeremiah warns us that as a nation we have turned away and we crave all sorts of things that do not satisfy from sports to cars to possessions to drugs and alcohol.

Has a nation changed its gods, which are not gods? But my people have changed their glory for what does not profit. Be astonished, O heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid; Be very desolate, says the Lord. For My people have committed two evils. They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn for themselves cisterns – broken cisterns that can hold no water (Jeremiah 2:11– 13).

I think of the times when we stand there at the refrigerator looking into its filled shelves, but not finding anything to satisfy. We are looking and trying this and trying that but never filled. God wants to fill your life with good things and if we allow Him to fill us with himself, then and only then will he bless us with good things.

Psalm 107:8-9

Let them give thanks to the LORD

for His loving-kindness,

And for His wonders to the sons of men!

For He has satisfied the thirsty soul,

And the hungry soul

He has filled with what is good.