The other day I decided to make bread. Actually, I read a facebook post from a friend who was raving about her fresh strawberry jam and wished she had homemade bread to go with it. Well, I didn’t have homemade strawberry jam, or even strawberries to make the jam, but I could make bread. It was early in the day and it hadn’t gotten hot yet, and I had just enough time before John’s swimming lessons to knock out a batch.
My recipe makes 5 loaves, which is too much for my family to eat all at once, so I usually give a loaf or two away or freeze them. I decided to take two loaves to rehearsal that night for our director and assistant director of the community theater. They have to do a lot of yelling, and they probably aren’t getting a lot of recognition right now for all the work they are putting in. Yes, there is the reward of a great show when it all comes together, but I thought it would be nice to just give them a little something now. After my directorial debut with the old ROADSHOW, I’m much more understanding and compassionate toward those directors and the crap they go through. So, I wrote out little notes that said, “Thanks for helping us ‘rise’ to the occasion.” I gave one loaf to the director, and she seemed genuinely grateful. Maybe the loaf of bread itself wasn’t the greatest thing in the world, but hopefully she understood the message behind it. The assistant director wasn’t there, yet, but I put a loaf for her over on the table where I knew she would find it when she came in.
Now a bit of backstory on the assistant director–She’s about 8 months pregnant and I have no idea why she even agreed to help with this show. She never seems overly happy, and a few nights earlier, she had been downright grouchy in directing us. As a village woman, I don’t have a whole lot of time on stage, and it seems they only want me there to watch over my fake children (and they keep assigning me MORE fake children). It’s a shame I can’t have my own daughter as my village child. Instead, I get to watch over and herd other people’s children. We had a rehearsal there that the director and the assistant director kept giving us conflicting directions of where to be and what to do, the “kids” that I was in charge of were out of control, and I wondered why I ever wanted to be in this show, anyway. I mean, if I wanted to be under appreciated and herd disobedient children, I could do that at home, right?
Well, the next day I got an email from this assistant director. She apologized for her crankiness the night before, and explained that she hadn’t been feeling well, and –hello? She’s pregnant. No other excuse is necessary. I hadn’t thought she had been overly grouchy, but it really meant a lot to me to receive an apology anyway. We’re all just regular people, trying to work together to put on a good show, right?
So–back to the night of the bread. We got into rehearsal and she came over to me, and I automatically wondered what I had done wrong this time, and she said, “Thank you so much for that bread! That is SO nice of you.” Oh. The bread. I had almost forgotten that I had left her bread. I said “you’re welcome,” and moved on.
That was a Wed or Thursday night. Then on Saturday, she came up to me again. “Paige, I just need to tell you thank you again for the bread. You must have been inspired. We’re in the middle of moving, and we had NO food at the new place, and my kids and I were starving, and then I remembered that bread. You SAVED us that night. Thank you so much.”
Wow! I hadn’t felt inspired, and it was really just a loaf of bread (very yummy whole wheat bread, but still, it wasn’t like I made her dinner). But to her, at that moment, that loaf of bread meant everything.
In that moment I was thankful that I had listened to the little prompting that gave me the idea to take bread to these ladies. I said a little prayer thanking Heavenly Father for the prompting, and allowing me to bless their lives just a little bit. I want to be open to that kind of promptings so that I can bless lives more often.
In primary on Sunday, my sharing time was about the Holy Ghost. I had several examples and visuals about the comforter, and using our senses. But my favorite analogy was that of a marble in a glass jar. If I shake the jar, I can hear that marble rattling in the jar. It makes a soft tinkling sound, just like the Holy Ghost speaks to us softly. But if the jar gets dirty, just like if our lives get dirty, (and I poured some dirt into the jar) you can’t hear the sound of the marble anymore, maybe only a faint occasional clicking sounds. Likewise, we can’t hear the Holy Ghost if our lives are dirty with sin.
Now I don’t know if the kids will remember for more than 9 seconds ANYTHING that we discussed in sharing time, but I will remember. And I am hoping that I will be more open and willing to act on those promptings from the Holy Ghost.