After our mandatory quiet time was over, I shuffled around the kitchen in a daze adding ingredients to our bread maker for french bread. Flour, a bit of sugar, warm water, one farm fresh egg, a pinch of salt and a little oil; no sooner than I hit the start button I knew I had forgotten the most important ingredient. You know the one that makes the magic happen, the key ingredient that makes the dough rise and acts as a catalyst binding every ingredient together–creating soft, fluffy, warm dough and when it’s baked, it gives away to golden, crisp goodness.

Yeast, I left out the yeast. 

French bread isn’t its namesake without being light and fluffy–all because of one simple ingredient. As I dumped the required amount in, I sucked in my breath thinking:

Our days are dense, bitter, and hard when we forget to include Jesus. 

And how often have I forgotten him lately?

Life isn’t made of picture perfect moments, snapshots of success, perfectly placed furniture with clean and well dressed kids. Real life is full of little moments, like bits of grainy sand. Each grain small and insignificant but piled together creates a beach–a beautiful place to dwell. But these grainy moments can rub our soul raw when we try to go through real life on our own.

These grainy moments sneak up on us, just when we think we can do life without him, expectations, tantrums, and shattered glass drag us down while perfection breaks our back in the midst of it.

Life–like that beach is much like making dough, we need to add Jesus to the daily mix.  

We need his presence, his grace, his warmth. Without him, life is dense, flat, and tasteless. Without him, our messy beautiful world of marriage, motherhood, career, and life doesn’t make sense, there is no peace and we can’t catch a breath. 

When we are spent beyond weariness, add Jesus–he becomes our strength to muddle through.

When the clutter, the laundry pile, and bills threaten to topple over on us, whisper his name and he becomes the anchor. 

When we forget homework, can’t find our keys, and yell at the kids, stop and close your eyes, picture him standing there with you. Jesus becomes our redemption during a rough morning. 

When the crankiness and bickering of kids threaten to push us beyond our limits add Jesus and he becomes the source of patience and wisdom. 

When our phones and Facebook messages are silent and loneliness tells us we are unwanted, turn to Jesus and he becomes our soul saving friend. 

My life is like that right now, full of homework, searching for a solid identity, refining my writing, wondering how to reach my reader’s hearts as my head and heart pound out the moments of when I can steal away to hear his voice above real life–to sense his soothing presence as I stand on bits of sand. 

If your life is dry, dense, or bitter, ask yourself if you’ve added the most important ingredient.

God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at the break of day. Psalm 46:5

pink Slippers on wood floor


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