I fling the bread dough up in the air, turn it over and flop it down on the pastry mat. I try to seal the creases. It has been a struggle, this attempt at baking bread. First, the yeast did not activate and I had to start afresh after getting honey stuck in a big clump of my hair. Then I could not get the correct consistency of the dough and I almost ran out of flour.
Sigh… Perhaps, the Lord did not call me to bake my own bread? I stretch it out on the pastry mat, tugging at it for all I am worth, pound and stretch it some more. I am hard on this piece of dough; near ruthless and then…comes His soft whisper.
“This is the way they treated my body”, He gently, sweetly, reminds me of His presence. “They had no regard for it; beat on it, tugged it, punched it…my body was treated with disdain.”
And then I remembered the days when I would make communion bread for the church. How I cherished that ministry. I would lovingly pierce the bread before I baked it, and as I did, I remembered His body pierced for us…for me. Next, I polished and washed the sterling silver tray, making it sparkle. Joyfully I laundered the old linen cloth to cover the bread as I took it to church and then set it before the congregation to partake.
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.
Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works.
Have I? Have I left my first love? Has sorrow after sorrow, disappointment after disappointment, caused this heart of mine to harden? I remember the days following my conversion when the grass sparkled brightest green and the ocean shimmered more glorious than diamonds. When the sky could not have been a deeper blue and wild flowers softly danced in the gentle breeze.
Lord, have mercy if I have.
He then beckons me to come outside and ponder all the beauty He has graced this fair earth with, for the winters are warm here this year. I already hear the song of the dove I so love, and the daffodils have poked through; irresistibly yearning higher towards the light and warmth above. The fruit trees are bud-swelling and spring-time like days would beckon me to pause and feel His pleasure and joy over me once more.
And then He whispers to me to sit at His feet and be alone with Him, for this is the one good thing in His estimation… And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
Our relationship with God…So very important and that which cannot be taken away from us. It will keep our hearts tender; especially if we ponder Him in the Garden agonizing and then beaten, pierced and nailed for us.
And when we suffer grief or fear, let us remember that every step of pain we have to endure, Jesus blood-stepped up the road of Calvary before us.
Suddenly, I think the baking of bread a sacred thing once more and worth the effort. His body given for me…may I never esteem it lightly. The gift whose worth can never be measured; priceless, precious and when pondered upon through His eyes, able to make the heart soft and tender once more.
I am that bread of life…
Revelation 2:4-5; Luke 10:39, 42; John 6:48