When I serve potatoes, I rarely begin with potatoes.
I begin with a box or a bag.
In my freezer are bags of hash brown potatoes and french fried potatoes.
In my pantry are boxes of potatoes au gratin and bags of instant potato flakes.
In my refrigerator sits a container of factory-made mashed potatoes ready to be heated in the microwave.
I do have a five-pound bag of “real” potatoes, a shriveling, budding mass of semi-solid ovals that will probably be thrown out.
That sums up my list of “potato” items.
In my mother’s kitchen, the only “potato” item was a ten-pound bag of raw potatoes, replaced weekly.
More days than not, Mom first scrubbed and peeled, and then fried, mashed, baked, or boiled potatoes. They were a staple in our diet.
But I seek speed and convenience in my relationship with potatoes.
In fact, I seek speed and convenience in almost every area of life.
You probably do too.
We want quick gas station stops and drive-through ATM’s.
We snatch information from Siri or Google to avoid visiting a library and doing research.
We zip in and out of grocery stores to buy foods our parents grew in gardens.
For the ultimate in speed and convenience, we drive up to a window on the side of a building, and someone hands out our dinner in a bag or box.
We’ve got speed and convenience down to an art.
We may even seek a quick and easy relationship with God.
We don’t have time for a relationship nourished with daily prayer and Bible study.
We go to church when we can, and we limit our intake of scripture to what the minister reads aloud each week.
Or we skip the drive and stream a church service online.
We utter our only prayer of the day after we go to bed, and fall asleep in the middle of it.
As for that old-time religion practiced by earlier saints?
We don’t have time for that.
I am adding my usual autumn caution. NEVER drive through a deep pile of leaves.