I keep meaning to touch on this parable, but then something else captures my thoughts that day and I never get to it. This is one of the shortest parables in the Bible- in fact, it is only two verses long. But being a bread baker myself, I completely understand this parable, and it makes me feel all warm and bubbly inside just thinking about it.
20Again he asked, "What shall I compare the kingdom of God to? 21It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough." Luke 13:20,21
When a baker mixes a loaf of bread, they use flour, salt, water and yeast to make a very basic bread dough. Without the yeast, the flour, salt, and water would combine to make a dough, but it would not rise, and you would end up with something resembling flat breads or crackers. Yet it only takes the tiniest pinch of yeast to turn that entire ball of doughy mess into something beautiful and full of lift and life. It is the tiny bit of yeast that permeates every corner of the dough and transforms it from a lump of dough into a loaf of bread. Such is the Kingdom of Heaven. When we are without Christ, we are like the unleavened bread. We are lumpy and misshapen, and our life has no purpose or meaning. But once a bit of Christ has been added, we start to take shape. When the Kingdom of God enters our lives it permeates us and transforms us into something beautiful, and something that can be used.
Yeast is an invisible force. Once it has been added to the dough, we cannot see it, we cannot open a loaf of bread and see the yeast, it has become one with the dough. Same thing with the Kingdom of God. Once Christ has been added to some one's life, he cannot be picked out, but he transforms that person's life completely. He's an invisible force that provides structure and gives substance.
I like to think of myself as a loaf of bread. This kind of runs along the lines of the potter's hands message I shared last week. No two loaves of bread are made exactly the same. In an artisanal bakery, every single loaf of bread is shaped individually, and each loaf can serve a different purpose. Some become sandwich breads, some are more for slicing and eating, some for dipping, some bread may become pizza dough or pita bread. But each piece of bread is lovingly kneaded and shaped by a master baker. The same with us. Each of us has been lovingly kneaded and shaped by our Heavenly Father who made us just so, and to serve a specific purpose.
Are you a loaf of bread? Has the Heavenly yeast been added to your life? If not, you can check out these posts to help add that precious gift.