On the Monday of the May long weekend, I am looking out my kitchen window at forsythia in full bloom. After a weekend packed with gardening, a bike ride and visits, I am baking bread to prepare for another busy week.
My husband asks why I don’t just relax, and I tell him that making bread is relaxing. It is work, too, but somehow it feels like relaxing work. Probably because it slows me down and forces me to be patient. Like hanging clothes on the line, it can’t be rushed. I have to let the oatmeal mixture cool. I have to wait for the dough to rise. I have to go slow.
I watch the yeast bubbling in the warm water, little bubbles rising to the surface.
I don’t understand how yeast works. I do know it is a chemical reaction, and that when conditions are right, it works a miracle in the dough, causing it to rise. As I watch the yeast bubble up, I wonder if we could all be like yeast, bringing change. Then I realize that we are, that we do.
We live ordinary-looking lives, working in our gardens, driving kids everywhere, cleaning out garages, but on another level, our lives are extra-ordinary. Like the yeast working in the dough, we too can and do make miracles happen. We change the world, one little choice at a time. We change the world every time we choose love, honesty, integrity, generosity.
Jesus once told a parable about yeast working through dough. I think he meant that something small can have big results. By doing small things, good things, we can have a big impact on our world. We can be part of the miracle.
As I take the bread out of the oven, filling the house with its delicious smell, I see the result of the yeast working in the bread. And I feel hope.