Peggy Glynn | The Voice of Zion February 2022 --
I punch down the bread and again feel the soft dough engulfing my hands, a feeling I have come to love. When my future husband first visited the farm where I was raised, my mother served him her fresh homemade bread. He teased me later in life that he married me for my mother’s bread. I tried to make it like Mom but I never did hit that mark of perfection. I’m yet trying. As life moved on, I baked bread again and again for our growing family. The iconic bowl of bread dough rising over the edges comforted me that our daily bread will be provided.
In the biblical story of the loaves and fishes, no matter how many people came to be fed, there was enough bread and fish. The people present must have marveled at the miracle before them. Jesus added His powerful yeast that fed them all, even the smallest child. This story has reminded me that our family will be provided for as Jesus provided for all present that day many years ago. God himself only knows what the purpose for this story is for people through the ages. There is an old saying that every newborn child comes with a loaf of bread under its arm, so reminiscent of the Bible’s story of the loaves and fishes.
There is something in the act of making bread for my family that makes me feel so good. It may have been watching the bread rise, as if the bread was saying “there will plenty for all.” Maybe it is because I have such dear memories of my mother’s homemade bread. Maybe because I loved watching my children eat it with butter dripping down their chins. Will their memories of eating my bread be as dear to them as it is for me?
When we had our tenth baby, my close Christian neighbor, Tarja Nevala, brought me a beautiful bread ring of Finnish pulla. She said it signified the ring of life. She told me it was an old Finnish custom to bring this to a family with a new baby. How beautiful, I thought. So yes, the ring, the circle of life symbolized in this old tradition reminding our family that the love of Christ is endless and his blessings will come even to the least of us all. In the scriptures we read that Jesus demonstrated how He is the source of life, the living bread from heaven, so you will not die, but gain eternity in heaven. I was reminded that this new child will come with many blessings in the household of those who believe. Now as I age, the words of King David ring true for me still. In Psalms 37:25, King David writes;
“I have been young, but now I am old;
yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken,
nor his descendants begging bread.”