I have four of the most adorable grandchildren, two boys and two girls, and they all love to bake. One day my oldest granddaughter asked if we could make homemade bread together. Since I love to bake and I love her, it was a no brainer. Some of my favorite memories are from when I would make bread when my daughters were young. We played a game while kneading the dough where we would “punch the devil”. There was one incident when the bread had risen and was almost ready to go into the oven and my oldest daughter came to me so proud—she had beat the devil down again. If only it was that easy! Now back to the story.
We made our plans to bake bread and invited several of the other young women in the congregation who are homeschooled for a home economics lesson. What a wonderful experience it was! Laughter, sticky fingers, and a whole lot of flour could be seen and heard. There were several things accomplished that day together in my kitchen:
- An older woman teaching the younger
- Both young and old enjoying each other’s fellowship
- Girls learning life skills to enable them later in life
- The feeling of accomplishment and the joy of sharing it with their families as each girl took a loaf of bread home for dinner that night
Some of my fondest childhood memories are of time spent with my grandmothers in the kitchen. The kitchen was filled with aroma, love, fellowship, and stories from their past that helped them to become who they were. The jams and jellies cooking, bread rising, and pies baking enhanced the love and conversation of “yesteryears”. It was not only the conversation that was shared but it was also the kindness of these two beautiful women. Their stories helped me to understand my grandmothers so much more and the hardships they endured. You might wonder why your grandparents save EVERYTHING but when you hear their stories you will understand a little better. It was so amazing as we rolled out pie dough, it sparked the conversation of courting. I will always remember the sparkle in my grandmother’s eyes as she remembered the past herself.
Even as I write these words, it makes me realize how much different things are now and how the generation gap does need to be bridged. These memories fostered the desire to be able to do that for my grandchildren and those close to us. There is so much going on in our young children’s world we need to take each and every moment as a sharing and teaching opportunity. As an older Christian woman I have a responsibility to be an example to all those around me, I am thankful I can do that with the younger generation.
In Titus 2:2-5 it says: 2 Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance.3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, 4 so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
Teaching our young women does not happen overnight, it takes prayer, nurturing, caring, and building bonds that open the door for communication. It takes intentional effort, because it will not happen by accident.
While a loaf of bread is baking in the oven, flour is being cleaned from the floors and counters, a multitude of dishes have been washed and dried, the laughter still flows, and hopefully the memories will last a lifetime. I’m so thankful for the time I was able to spend with my grandmothers in the kitchen. Because of their example I was able to share those special moments with my own children, and now it has grown into a beautiful bridge between the generations in our congregation. Our young ladies need us to be a part of their lives and let them know we care. One way I have chosen to do this is through baking bread, how will you choose to bridge that gap?
Written By: Debbie Davidson
Debbie has been married to her husband, Doug Davidson, for 41 years. They currently attend the Jefferson Street Church of Christ where Doug serves as the deacon over the Savvy Seniors ministry. They have 3 daughters, 2 of which attend Baker Heights Church of Christ in Abilene, TX (along with their spouses), and 1 daughter and family who attend Jefferson Street Church of Christ in Hobbs. Their 4 grandchildren light up their world, and her greatest joy and blessing is that all of her daughters and sons-in-law, as well as her oldest grandchild, are faithful Christians. Her hobbies are baking and sharing. Her motto is always double the recipe-one for keeping and one for sharing.