Jul 6, 2013

What's Cookin' - Part 1

Don and I are having a cookout today, and I decided to try making homemade baked beans.  Step one is to soak the beans, which I did last night.

Step one, check.
Step two is to put them in a pot with 5 cups of water and bring them to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours. I added a bit more water, just to be safe.

Step two, in the pot, stove on high, check.

Oh yes, I need to send an email to someone who is coming today and ask them a quick question.  Won’t take but a minute.  I’ll be right back down.

Oh, and here’s that card I need to send out today.  I’ll just fill this out so I can get it in the mail.  And before I send the email, let’s check what I received.  Wow, someone replied to my Facebook post. Let’s see who else replied, I’ll just log on to Facebook for a sec.  What an awesome video posted by a teen from her missions trip this past winter.  Very moving! And here’s info about my niece’s baby shower.

And while I’m upstairs, I need to finish getting the guest room ready for our company.  I’ll put the blanket in the drier, that’s the last of the laundry.  Let’s see, where did I put the sheets for the bed?  Oh, here they are, in the drawer.  Brand new, so I’ll need to wash them too.  As I opened the new sheets packaging, I retraced my earlier steps and what I needed to do next.
OHMYGOSH, the beans!

Forty-five minutes after leaving the kitchen, I flew down the steps and ran toward the crackling sounds of a pot boiling over.  What a mess!  Water all over the stove top, burned onto the top, and burned onto the pot.  I turned off the burner and slowly slid the pot to the side.  From past experience I knew not to touch it yet.  The ceramic cooktop burner was still sparking, everything was steaming or smoking.
But wait, I think the beans are OK.  Yes, amazingly more than half of them are not burned at all.  I carefully spooned the unburned beans into a bowl.  I figured that boiling for 45 minutes was enough cooking –I didn’t want to overdo them.

And not only were the beans OK, but the pot also cleaned up quite easily. Nothing remained stuck to the bottom, and I only needed a sponge to wipe it clean after a quick soak.

Let me get back to that past experience, which ended up quite differently.  I got home from work one night and decided I wanted pasta for dinner, so I put on the water to boil.  Then I went upstairs to change.  While upstairs I got a phone call, flopped down on the bed, and chatted away…until the smoke and burning smell reached my room. It was about the same amount of time, too: 45 minutes.

Unlike this time, though, the first pot was completely destroyed.  I’m thankful it didn’t catch on fire!  It took quite a while to scrape all the pieces off the stove top and clean up the mess.  The smell lingered in the house for days.
As I thought about the difference between the two pots, the first thing that came to mind is that the first one was just a pot of water.  The water quickly boiled and steamed away.  The second one was full of beans AND water, plus I had added a bit of extra water.  The beans delayed the evaporation of the water and helped to protect the pot.

Many spiritual parallels are coming to my mind. But I believe the Lord wants to speak directly to you about how to apply this to your walk with Him.
So, back to my beans. 

Add all ingredients. 

Step three, check.  (Well, almost check.  I don’t have one of the ingredients so I’ll just make do without it.)
Put in the oven to bake for two hours.

Step four, check.

Out of the oven, and hmmmmm, much better aroma.  And they taste pretty good too. 

But it seems that missing ingredient had a purpose.  More on that tomorrow.
And PS - I just now sent out that original email. In all the excitement, I forgot all about it!
Today’s Challenge:  Spend time with the Lord and ask Him to speak to you about burning pots, water, and beans.  Please share your comments – I’d like to hear what He showed you!


  1. There are times when the multi-tasking ability is a blessing, but I'm finding that as I get older I struggle with "chasing rabbit trails." The key for me has been to keep thinking, even saying the plan out loud--makes me think about the whole idea of being intention and even praying without ceasing.

    It was nice too, to hear about someone else's pot stories, my hub loves to tell about how I burnt water and forgot I had eggs boiling and left the house to run an errand...exploding eggs everywhere and a pan in the trash. Sigh.

  2. Thank you, Tina - yes, rabbit trails trace all over my life, and i hadn't thought about it that way. Focus does take more effort, And I think I will try saying things out loud. Also, I have become a list maker :-).
    And eggs, check. Small pot + too many eggs + too little water + left to their own devices = stinky house and pot in the trash!!!

  3. For me the unattended beans represent how I can get distracted from any God-given task. Sometimes it turns out okay, No real harm done or mess from being distracted from the task & yet other times, like your pasta incident, there's more of a mess that results from my unattention to the task before me. Focusing on what God has put before me or to what He has led me to is always the wiser option. Robin

    1. Amen, Robin!
      Although, you used a word I'm not familiar with: focus!
      Thank you for commenting!

  4. I'm not sure how I missed your blog (another blond moment, to be sure), but as you can imagine, I can SO relate to this post! The last thing I burned: a pot of hard boiled eggs. Just last week. I see that I'm in good company with you and Tina!

    Gracious, I have such a struggle with focus in almost every area. Seems the only thing I can really do is outline a Sunday School lesson. Grateful for new mercies and a fresh start today!

  5. Me too on the eggs, almost forgot about them. Don was working in our home office, right next to the kitchen, so I stepped in to tell him something. A short while later, he sniffed and said, "smells like something's burning - are you cooking something?" OHMYGOSH, the eggs! Pan and eggs immediately in the trash, smell in the house for days. You'd think I would have learned...:-)
    Thank you for your comment, Susan!


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