From the Kitchen to the Congregation
These last few weeks Jamie and I have been attempting to can the fruit flourishing in our yard. (Let’s be honest—I cut and mash; she cooks and cans). This note is one she wrote a few days ago, a bit of a peek into our life and faith and the congregations we cherish.
I'm teaching myself how to can. A very productive apple tree and grape vines have forced the issue. Turns out canning is not for the weak of spirit. My pot of "apple butter" splattered all over the kitchen for hours and never thickened anyway. The first round of grape jelly is lackluster. The apple pie jam is too sweet. But the applesauce is good. I'll take it.
Lessons canning is teaching me:
- patience is required
- don't take on more than a few hours work at a time
- it takes a lot of raw resources to produce a small amount of goodness
- it's better to embrace the process than curse it
- you might not even like the end product but someone will
- all the effort and mess is ultimately nourishing and life-giving
As it turns out, these canning life lessons can apply more broadly. Think of church and re-read the list. Patience, moderation, hard work, acceptance, and bringing goodness to others. It's the church!
My grandmothers would be proud, both of the canning efforts and the church participation. I can rest in the satisfaction of knowing this as I scrape apple splatter off the floor (and stove, and microwave, and cabinets, and ceiling, and...).
May all your efforts be fruitful - may your hard work give life to others.
Rev. Jamie Kepros is pastor of Lummi Island Congregational Church (UCC) and my beloved spouse