Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Lessons in Baking

Sourdough is a mysterious thing. 

It nourishes.  And it teaches.

I don't need to share with you my common tale of woe.  Who really cares but me and my God?  But there has been real heartbreak in my life this week - hard lessons, dearly learned. 

I've cried till my head aches. 

And I have spent hours in the kitchen, kneeding bread - cooking, baking - thanking God for something to keep my mind occupied, my hands busy.

Part of my life is feeding my sourdough starter twice a day.

It's a ritual, like having a pet in a jar.  I love it, and I care for it.  But was the first time I wept over it.

Nothing I can do myself will ever change a bowl of flour and water into something so complexly nourishing that my entire body benefits from it.

I can add flavor, provide optimium conditions, kneed it with tender care and strong hands, but without life, it will always just be a bowl of flour and water.

Life I can't see is swimming in the air around me. I add warm water to a handful of ground up grain and it becomes a sponge that can literally suck up life and feed it.

What goodness! What providence is this?

I can't make a sourdough starter.  All I can do is feed what someone else brought to life.  And as I contemplated the sorry state of my dashed hopes, I saw myself in that jar of bubbly, living goo.

I realized I am as lifeless and hard as a handful of flour. 

photo credit
Everything I need is hovering around me, but I can't get at it on my own.  Not without hot rain, drenching every dry, locked up, stingy corner of me.  Then I have the power to pull in that which will break down my hard places and make me soft and lovely.

What kind of lesson did your breakfast teach you this morning? 

1 comment:

  1. Keep the faith and the food. It gets better.

    Jesus loves us this I know cuz the bible tells me so!!