Our church has a tradition that each month someone takes a turn baking the unleavened bread for our Lord’s Supper that day. Today it is my turn. I will admit I thought it was pretty cool, but that is about all the thought I gave it. I love communion services, and get the significance, but I just saw this as doing what I had signed up to do, and doing my part. Had to make a run to the store the night before and set my alarm to get up a little extra early to do it, but that was ok…not a big deal. Not a big deal…or so I thought last night.
This morning I awoke and it was a whole different story. I found myself going back through recipes making sure to pick the one I thought would turn out the best, the one that wouldn’t taste like cardboard, the one I might not burn, the one that wouldn’t fall apart. Even as I started mixing the ingredients, it began dawning on me that this was no mundane task.
I do not want to “over spiritualize” this, nor do I pretend to know all the significance, but we can BE religious and doctrinal, or we can EXPERIENCE the spirit of the religion. I have this morning truly experienced the doctrine and ordinance of the Lord’s Supper and had communion with my Savior standing in my kitchen all alone at 6am this morning.
My mind went to the thousands of years that this supper of unleavened bread has been going on, and the millions of hands that have, now like mine, prepared it. OK, so they did not have a Walmart or a Kitchenaid, which serves to remind me that this for them could have gone two ways. It could have been a mundane task, much more so that for me, or it could have been a joy to prepare a “meal” that served to honor what the Lord had delivered them from, and to this day, to celebrate His deliverance. The kneading of the bread, the rolling it out, firing up the ovens, hoping it turned out well for their celebrations.
Then my recipe called for “scoring” the loaf before you bake it, so it is easier to cut into small pieces when completed. Scoring. As I was doing it, God brought to mind all the times throughout all the years backs were turned on God, on His perfect love for His people, ignored, disobeyed, His heart broken, His people worshiping gods of their own making, scoring the heart of the Father. Yet He was still willing to continue with His plan to redeem His people. With everything He ever did pointing to this moment, this Last Supper in the upper room, where Jesus would visually show and explain His body broken for His people. Tears flowed. Still they didn’t get it. Still we don’t get it. It’s mundane. We have heard it before.
But as the bread came out of the oven, just as Jesus came out of the tomb, the aroma was sweet and inviting, and wholesome, and overtook everyone in the house. This time, as I cut the loaf into smaller pieces, I wept. Tears of joy, of disbelief, of love, and of embarrassment that I was in the kitchen bawling over a flat piece of bread. But in a whole new way, and a brand new perspective, it was so real to me. His love. His provision. His pain that I had a hand in causing. His resurrection and eternal standing as King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Our Salvation…our Bread of Life.