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Pleasure Dome Thunder BW

Empty Bread Shelves

Thursday, 22 July 2021 — This morning, while grinding coffee beans, I paused to switch on the oven in preparation to bake Ciabatta bread. During the grind, an upward glance to our bread shelf revealed we still had enough bread from yesterday. I switched off the oven. The dough would keep for another 24 hours of slow ferment in the fridge.

While pulling the espresso shot on the lever machine, God spoke, telling me to bake a bread for Maria—our cleaning, cooking, and cookie baking lady. He impressed upon me, even though we have enough bread, she and her children do not. I felt rather selfish, immediately apologised to God, and again switched on the oven.

I have an excellent Ciabatta recipe, tuned to perfection for my ingredients, oven, and schedule. We’ve come to only eat this bread, baked using well fermented dough.

When the alarm rang, out came an impressive looking Ciabatta loaf. Several appreciative and hopeful comments arose from my family as they drifted into the kitchen, drawn by the delicious fragrance. It seems fresh baked bread is like catnip for most humans. While cooling on the wire rack, a well placed note informed them to keep their hands off.

When Maria came in for work, I asked her to see me during her break. At lunch, I bagged the Ciabatta loaf, and testified to Maria how God had led me to bake this bread.

That’s when she revealed their predicament:

Thank you very much! Because of the looting, the shops are out of the cheap bread we usually buy, bread shelves are empty. We have none.

The looting and destruction in South Africa during this time was all over local and even International news. The detrimental effects of wanton destruction in other areas of our country resulted in a bread shortage in our area. I had no idea, but Maria and her family felt it in their stomachs.

God knew all this, and had bread baked to meet the physical need He saw in Maria’s house. Amazing!

Later, Maria told me that she and her children marveled at how God had led me to bake bread especially for them, all the more noteworthy since I didn’t even bake one for us.

God is so kind and caring, even when I’m not. He made me look good when, in truth, I had to repent of selfishness. This is a marvelous side-effect of being led by God… He makes much more of us than what we are. It’s like an average person enhanced by a superpower they weren’t born with and don’t deserve.

Besides being fed, Maria and her kids all loved the fresh Ciabatta bread! God is good. God is love.