Jesus in the kitchen

by DanWolgemuth on June 22, 2018

Grace Wolgemuth loved to bake bread.

I remember vividly walking through the back door of our home on Park Street in Wheaton, Illinois into the smell of freshly baked bread. It was a culinary hug. A whole wheat welcome mat. My Mom had the recipe, technique, baking and timing down to a science.

But before the taste, the smell.

Yes, before the crust is cut, before the butter hits the hot slice… the smell. But it takes other smells to beget the perfect smell. Less pleasant smells. Even unpleasant smells.

The robust smell of a freshly plowed field. The disks of the plow breaking through the winter crust. Dirt, the home of a tiny seed… the smell of preparation.

At times, the stench of manure saturates the late spring/early summer air. The heavy humid summertime air carries the aroma of growth.

Before the beautiful and appetizing smell of perfection… the smell of preparation, of fertilization, of protection, of growth. A seed becomes a kernel. A kernel becomes flour. Flour finds its way to a local shelf in a Jewel Grocery store. That flour slides through the skilled fingers of a baker, of my mother… and all the smells that preceded that moment find their destiny fulfilled in a perfectly formed loaf.

Grace Wolgemuth stewarded the difficult smells that arced over the history of the ingredients. Unpleasant aromas that were a prerequisite to the ultimate aroma.

I smell the dirt… the distinct scent of brokenness. Of the soil being readied. Plow blades across the bad habits, the prejudicial perspectives, the winter formed opinions that require action before seeds can find a home.

I smell the stench of evil and pain and disappointment and injustice; gut wrenching, but not wasted. Food for the good seeds. Fuel to accelerate what the rain and sunshine will nourish.

No smell dismissed, some smells fiercely unpleasant… but stewarded by the Baker, in His skilled hands.

Smells that define our calling, now coalescing in the kitchen.

Before the beautiful smell of Easter, the stench of death. Before the fragrance of grace, the stink of sin.

At 103 East Park, Wheaton, Illinois… the smell of bread made by Grace.

What fills your nostrils today? Is it the robust smell of brokenness; soil being made ready? Is it the stench of evil and sin; manure, but fuel for a healthy soul?

Someday, in the kitchen of grace, the smells will be redeemed; transformed. An open invitation to celebrate, to feast, to delight.

I am the bread of life… This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like the bread the fathers ate, and died. Whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” (John 6:51, 58 ESV)

Jesus in the kitchen. He is to be trusted with every smell.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: