My beloved atheist friends, cover your eyes because I’m sharing something religious today.
Okay you don’t really have to cover your eyes – you could just click away. Or you could stay and read how I didn’t burn my house down yesterday. Either way, I’ll see you next post or at your place.
My husband was asked to do the communion message at church and he decided to focus on the breaking of bread. We usually eat those tasteless little wafers that are already broken into pieces on the communion plate and wash that down with sour alcohol-free wine, so it’s easy to do the whole thing a bit mechanically. If truth be told, I am usually more moved by the message than I am by the act of breaking bread and eating it.
Sir asked me to make the unleavened communion bread that I usually make when we have house church. He wanted me to make it for the entire church of about 80, which means 8 flat loaves.
I make the bread gluten-free with a mix of chick pea flour and a gluten-free mix made mostly of corn flour. I throw in a small handful of large grain sea salt and sprinkle some olive oil over the mound. Then I swirl my hands around, mixing the flour and the oil until some pieces start to form. Then I hold the bowl with one hand over the sink, and with the other hand, I cup water in my palm and sprinkle it over the dough until it looks right. With that I am able to form a ball, which I then smoosh down flat, roll out and place on a heated iron skillet seasoned with olive oil.
Everyone likes it. Plus it’s salty and I figure that Jesus talks about us being the salt of the earth. The Lord’s body shouldn’t be dry and tasteless, right?
Anyway, there was a flurry of activity that morning because I had to drive Young Lady to her friend’s house to spend the day at EuroDisney; then I had to console Young Knight and Petit Prince that they were going to church instead of Disney. (Is that why there is so little faith in the world?) And then I had to make the bread.
I made two the usual way, and then thought I would use regular flour for the rest of the loaves. But when Sir tried them, he thought they were too floury-tasting. Not as good as usual. So I had to dump the whole batch, rinse the kneading board, the bowl and the skillet. Can you imagine what my kitchen looked like at this point?
Anyway, I finally had eight presentable loaves and we were on our way. Sir said his message would be about how Jesus always took the bread, gave thanks and broke it before people ate, and that was how he wanted to do the communion message today – that people would give thanks before breaking the bread. There was more to the message, but I won’t lay it all out here.
In the car, I remembered the flurry of activity before leaving and I prayed, “God, I’m pretty sure I turned my burners off, but I pray that I actually did turn the burners off.” Then I added, “And if I did forget, I pray that you do it for me.”
We got home, and other than a strong smell and a complete mess, the house was in tact. We microwaved a weekend’s entertainment worth of leftovers for lunch and then zipped over to the town hall to attend the fair there.
So it was not until five o’clock that night (we left at ten o’clock that morning) that I started to clean the kitchen and notice that the stovetop was hot. And the wooden kneading board next to the stovetop was hot. And the skillet was hot AAARGH because I had forgotten to turn the flame off and it was on medium high!!!
For the sermon, the pastor had talked about Moses and the burning bush. Actually, if you know the story, there was a flame but the bush was not being consumed. Moses had been forgotten in the desert for 40 years, and at the age of 80 he surely thought his life was almost over (and certainly had no intention of leading an entire revolution). But, as the pastor said, it was just another ordinary day of herding sheep for Moses when he stumbled on the burning bush. Who knows when one of our “just another ordinary days” will end up holding a burning bush for us.
I looked more closely at the skillet – it was not the iron one, but a cheap formerly non-stick pan. The flame had been under it for a total of seven hours but the pan was not burnt. There was no black smell. The crumbs were dark, but not burnt. There was even a small piece of bread left on the side of the pan and it was not burnt!
My very own “Moses” was not thrilled about the miracle that had just occurred in our lives. He was thinking (weak-kneed) about the potential for disaster that had just been averted. But I was pretty thrilled about the miracle.
And I’ll take that one over seeing Jesus’ face in my piece of toast any day.