Friday, February 19, 2010

Loaves of Bread

I have said many times that our journey to Samson has changed us. Our eyes are more open to the needs of the world. Steve and I have been talking a lot about where we will help and where we can contribute to make more of an impact. Our conversations ultimatley lead to ideas like down sizing our life style, selling our house, selling our boat, living more modestly, giving more of our time, giving more money and giving more in the talents God has gifted us with.

Esentially, we would like to live by the verse,

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Mathew 6:19-21)

I bake my own bread. I love bread baking days when I have no choice but to stay home and keep a careful eye on my bread. Sometimes I invite a friend to join me for the day. I simply just ask my friend to bring a couple bread pans to take a couple loaves home to bake in her own oven. My friend will stay during the bread dough preparations, kneading and rising times.

When you add a little play time on the Wii while the dough is rising, fun and deep conversation with a close friend and throw a couple of toddlers playing together in the mix, you have a recipe for a very full, rich day.

My recipe makes the equivalent of 5 loaves of bread (3 large and 4 mini). What ever our family doesn't devour on baking day and what ever I don't give away goes in the freezer.

I have had 2 baking days close together.
2 baking days = lots of loaves of bread in our freezer.
We have a abundance!

I am reading the book, "Hole in the Gospel" by Richard Stearns, President of World Vision. I HIGHLY recommend this book!! In his book, Stearns describes the Bible story about the boy who gave 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish to feed thousands who had nothing to eat. In this story, the 12 diciples saw this task as too big. They were too overwhelmed with the task at hand that they offered nothing. A small boy approached Jesus, gave him all he had and this small amount of food fed thousands of people. Talk about the power of one person!

You see, Jesus doesn't ask us to solve big problems on our own, he is only asking us for what we can offer in our gifts and talents.

I think I offer a pretty healthy loaf of bread. My recipe includes whole wheat and rye flours. In recent months, I have used freshly ground whole wheat flour thanks to a friend who owns a flour grinder and thanks to a local grain mill that sells organic wheat berries.

My recipe also includes just a little salt - enough to boost the flavor but not too salty. And there is a small amount of sugar to sweeten it up a little too. Molasses adds a little more richness to the bread.

My mother-in-law once told me that bread is very forgiving. This fact has saved me many times because I'm not perfect, so I sometimes forget an ingredient or step.

As a child of God, as one person, who has been forgiven of my sins, I need to look at what I can offer to the world. I don't want to store my loaves of bread anymore. I know there is so much more I can offer. Praying for my eyes to see opportunities to move forward and trust God with a undescriminating, forgiving and joyful heart.

What about you? Are you ready to give your loaves and watch God multiply them?

Bread baking days = loaves of bread = much love to share

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