The breaking of bread
I have survived the Crash of 2013. Never heard of it, you say? Well, I guess you probably haven’t. My personal computer died a slow death. I fought a valiant fight of frugality, but in the end, I had to purchase a new one. They surely aren’t made like old Betsy. I love that old gal – my 1968-ish Singer sewing machine. But I digress . . . I have lots I want to share. I apologize ahead of time that my blogs this week will seem a little outdated due to my lack of technology. I considered archiving them for a year, but I feel God has given them to me to write. So, write I shall.
Long ago as a new bride, the church we were attending held special events during Holy Week. One of those special events was the Thursday night service: The Blessing of the Breads. Each year, the church leadership asked ladies to make a special recipe of unleavened bread which makes about 8 loaves per batch. They call upon members to make the bread and bring it to the service to be blessed. Afterwards, each family (or individual) is given a loaf to take home and to remember Good Friday in their own homes, reflecting on the Last Supper Jesus had with his followers.
Growing up in a different faith, the whole idea was quite mystical to me. I had never paid any attention to the fact that bread was the food item that Jesus chose to represent the brokenness of His body. As I grew older I began to realize that every culture on earth has some form of bread. Using bread to share the story of Jesus life and death would be symbolic to every person in the entire world. To me, that is something quite incredible to ponder.
Even though I had been living on my own for almost 3 years prior, it came as quite a shock when the sweet, little, white-haired lady of the kitchen circle called me – a very new “grown-up” – to be one of the bakers. I was giddy with excitement and a tad bit nervous too. What if I messed up God’s bread? I love to cook and to experiment; so onward we went. Turns out it wasn’t that difficult of a recipe and we created pretty nice little loaves.
I remember the aura that travelled with us as we walked to the tiny off-white stucco church that evening with our basket of bread, nurturing it until we placed it on the altar. When we left the service that night, we took one of our own lovingly-made loaves back home with us. There was something quite calming in the ritual.
Twenty years later, the breaking of the bread is still a tradition in our family. We make the same bread each Easter, a tradition that we cherish. The well-worn and tattered recipe is the same one we now share with our current church family each time we have communion. Definitely one, I wish to pass down to my children and grandchildren, when I become the white haired Jesus lady.
Truthfully, I am transported back to that precious phone call each time I mix up a batch. I am filled with the same feeling of being loved and valued as someone who can offer comfort, even it is just a simple round of unleavened bread. And that is the yummiest of feelings!