rising hopes, prayer, community and bread...

I am thinking about a contemplative small group for the post-Easter season:  baking (and eating) bread.  Two of my favorite books are A Spirituality of Bread by Donna Sinclair and One Loaf by Joy Mead.

God of small beginnings
and rising hopes,
may we see eternity
in each wheat grain:
ours for today’s bread
and tomorrow’s planting;
food of life; gift to the future
and seed of hope.
I never have time for bread baking during Advent/Christmas but would love to do a small group using bread as both a prayer and nourishment. Now such thoughts have been swimming around my head for a few years. So when I came back from tonight's annual ministry review and evaluation - and came across these words from Jan Richardson - I said to myself:  GOTTA MAKE THIS REAL!

Just this
(for now)
that the loaves
kneaded
in your contemplative
crating,
offered as gift
in my
needed waiting,
tasted
oh my
of grace rising,
manna delighting.

Gertud Mueller-Nelson speaks of Advent as the school of learning the feminine virtues - and kneeding and rising and baking are part of this school's spirituality.  More and more I know she is right.

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