Library books

One of the things that I rattle on about, besides living in right relationship, is diversity and adaptation.  This sounds very scientific and academic, but it applies across the board.  See, I am not a literalist when it comes to … literally anything!   And so when it comes to reading the Bible, I’ve been taught to look at it in a diverse number of ways, and be open to other ways that I am not used to, or are new to me.

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This has come up in our Bible Study recently, because we’re reading Esther.  And Esther is … well, religious fiction.  A fairy tale.  As we were reading it carefully, we realized that there were cartoonishly large sterotypes, and over-the-top descriptions, and more than one stranger-than-fiction coincidence.  It is gorgeously structured, as a piece of literature, and was probably told as a story to children before the celebration of Purim before it was written down.  And this idea that Jesus sat at the feet of his mother or father or uncle or aunt to hear this story of beginnings, literally sat and listened, came home to me during this  Bible fellowship.  But when we look at the Bible as a library of many different kinds of literature, we realize that we don’t read everything in the same way.  We read letters differently than we read poetry, and we read that differently than we read science fiction/fantasy, and we adapt our filters whether we realize we are doing it or not.  However, all of these different kinds of reading, inform our understanding of (wait for it) living in right relationship with God, ourselves, and others. 

Saw that coming, didn’t you?


Sourdough, COVID and Romans (oh my!)

The COVID-19 era has people doing things we once did as part of everyday life.

Staying home more, going out less, preparing food at home and who can explain the sour-dough phenomenon?? It even has me hooked!!

It all started when a cousin who is also a wine maker offered to send me some of her starter, which she has been using for seven years. She in turn got it from her Nona.

Those of you who know about sour dough, will know that it based on wild yeast, meaning the starter is a mix of only flour and water. Much like COVID-19 there is much going on silently in the starter, which just does its thing, while we attempt to ‘get back to normal’!!

Every few days a measured amount of flour and water are added to the starter. It then sits on the kitchen bench or in the fridge, where it develops and grows, silently, slowly and gently. When you’re ready to make a loaf, you measure a percentage of the starter out, and add carefully weighed amounts of flour, salt and water, making a dough. The dough is then rested for a period of time. After this the dough is turned over in 30-minute intervals until the dough develops. This process can take hours, depending on the room temperature., the dough is then turned out onto a floured surface and stretched, if in this process it breaks, it needs more resting.

Once it is stretchable, you can then shape it into what ever shape you like.

Mine goes into a cast iron pot.

The dough is then rested overnight, in the fridge or on the kitchen bench.

The next morning it is prepared to bake, but there is still a careful process to follow.

The oven and cooking vessel are heated to 235 degrees, once both vessel and oven have reached the desired temperature, the carefully shaped dough is placed in the pre-heated dish, small incisions are careful scored into the top of the dough, allowing the natural occurring gasses to escape. The first 30-minute cooking time is undertaken with the lid on the pot and is removed allowing the top to develop its golden crust. It is at this stage when the aromas of freshly baked bread fill the house, and entices you just rip a piece out and lather it with butter, BUT to do so is not wise.

You need to rest the bread, before turning it out onto a cooling rack and have a fabulous product ready to enjoy with lashings of butter, honey or vegemite, a bowl of soup or some cheese.

Peter, I hear you say, that’s a lot of work for a loaf of bread, there must be an easier way. Well, not with sour dough, which is much the same way we deal with COVID-19.

What do you mean it’s like how we deal with COVID-19??!!!

Well think about this….

There are no short-cuts, try that with sour dough as I did, and it’s an epic failure!!

Sour dough teaches patience, and being measured.

Did you know bakers weigh all ingredients,? yes, they do, including liquid, its more accurate!

A friend of mine who was a baker made his own wedding cake. Each piece of fruit was sorted and cut in half!! No messy chopping; no each individual cut in half, the results were stunning!! Process and taking care and time is important, but I digress!!, back to COVID-19.

As we may become a little impatient, and want to get back together to sing, chat share food and celebrate our Christian journey, we might think, let’s just take a short cut or two!!

I have a new found respect for sour dough, while it doesn’t ‘frighten’ me, as COVID-19 may ‘frighten’ us, we should respect the virus, and ensure we are measured in our approach, and so that when we are able to gather the experience will be all the ‘sweeter’.

Together let’s share and hear each -others concerns. Like me, who listens to experienced sour dough bread makers, learn patience. Let us listen to those who are helping us put processes into place, as we plan a way back to meeting together, in a way that ensures a good outcome for us all.

A reading from Romans:

Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.


Upcoming Events

Sep
29
Tue
11:00 am Tuesday Tea Too
Tuesday Tea Too
Sep 29 @ 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Stage 4 version: a second tea added during the six week Stay At Home order. Please contact the Elders, Ministers or Church Office for the Zoom information.
4:00 pm Tuesday Tea on Zoom
Tuesday Tea on Zoom
Sep 29 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Please reach out to the church office, one of the Ministers or Elders for the meeting information!
Sep
30
Wed
10:00 am Bible Fellowship
Bible Fellowship
Sep 30 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 am
The event occurs on Zoom until further notice.  Contact the office or one of the ministers for the Meeting ID and password for the information!
Oct
1
Thu
2:00 pm Cooking Chat
Cooking Chat
Oct 1 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
 
Oct
7
Wed
10:00 am Bible Fellowship
Bible Fellowship
Oct 7 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 am
The event occurs on Zoom until further notice.  Contact the office or one of the ministers for the Meeting ID and password for the information!