Monday, January 29, 2007

Working with our Hands

Recently, I was given a breadmaker from my mother-in-law. It had been lurking in the dark cabinets of a friend of hers completely lonely and unused. (I hear that this happens often with these poor machines!) Since she knew that I like to make our family's bread, she generously offered to give hers to me. I was certainly thankful for the thoughtful gift.

The very first day, I put it to work. As my six-year-old entered the kitchen, I explained to her that this machine was doing all of the work for me. So, now we wouldn't have to knead the dough anymore. Her first response was "but, I like to knead the dough."

Shortly after, I came across a quote from a very wise woman. It said :
"Just as it is good to get one's fingers into the soil and plant seeds, so it is good to get one's fingers and fists into bread dough to knead and punch it."
"The Hidden Art of Homemaking" by Edith Schaeffer

And so, it seems to me that living is doing. It is getting our hands dirty and doing something wonderful with them. Whether it is wiping a baby to make him clean, cutting out a pattern and sewing the pieces together, or even kneading your own dough. I am not saying that we shouldn't ever buy our goods pre-made from the store. Those conveniences give us so much more free time to spend on other things. But, it is good to make the family's bread now and then. And a dress made by Mom will be something that a little girl treasures. These experiences help to shape a happy childhood and grow our children into able adults. I really think that they often find comfort in knowing that Mom and Dad can provide for them directly, not just through earning the money to buy, but though taking raw goods and turning them into something that the family needs or will enjoy. It is also in a way more satisfying to us. Perhaps it is because our marvelous Creator formed something from nothing. He didn't purchase the earth, but he formed it with his own hands, and it was good.


  1. Kendra,

    Thanks for the encouragement you left on my blog. I just posted about today and how it went. God is SO good and SO faithful!

  2. I agree!
    Children just don't view time the same way we do - to her, it is fun to punch down the dough and knead it with her little fingers - a necessary action to achieve a pleasant end. All work should be viewed this way!
    Thank you for your thoughts!

  3. Yes, you are so right.
    I have just taken up knitting and it is tedious--but I know the finished product will be so much more special than if I bought it.