Thursday, October 20, 2011

Reflections on Bakerwoman Godde

Based on the poem Baker Woman God by Bozarth Campbell:
Bakerwoman God, I am your living bread. Strong, brown, bakerwoman God, I am your low, soft and being-shaped loaf.
I am your rising bread, well-kneaded by some divine and knotty pair of knuckles, by your warm earth-hands. I am bread well-kneaded.
Put me in fire, bakerwoman God, put me in your own bright fire. I am warm, warm as you.
From fire, I am white and gold,
soft and hard, brown and round. I am so warm from fire
Break me, Bakerwoman God. I am broken under your caring Word.
Drop me in your special juice in pieces. Drop me in your blood. Drunken me in the great red flood Self-giving chalice, swallow me.
My skin shines in the divine wine. My face is cup-covered and I drown. I fall up in a red pool in a gold world where your warm sunskin hand is there to catch and hold me.
Bakerwoman God, remake me.

This poem is beautiful to me. It elaborates on Jesus comparison to Godde as a woman kneading the kingdom into the world as a baker woman kneads yeast into bread. Godde here is a homemaker, someone who "keeps house" in the world.

Since Jesus has been called the True Mana in scriptures, this image of Godde makes such beautiful, poetic sense to me. Jesus was the true manna, and we are nourished by Him. It's all very beautiful, to imagine Godde with brown, sun stained hands preparing True Manna for the world. Very hands on, down to earth. Bakerwoman Godde reminds me of my own mother: always working, always hands in the the dirt in the garden, or up to her arms in "doing what needs to be done." Even if it means coming down as a Galilean Hick, taking up His cross, and dying for us all. Though Godde is royalty, S/He who is, is also extremely humble. No task is beneath Her. Even washing smelly feet. Even calling His Betrayer "friend." Even forgiving His murderers as He died. 

I (k)need this image more than ever lately. At church these past few weeks, we've been preparing for a conference on The Holy Spirit. Lately, because of so much prayer, something in me has become completely broken. I can't say it's pride, because Lord knows I have an excess of that, but I feel like somebody is "kneading" me. Godde (Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer) have me on the kitchen table, pounding on me with knuckles, elbows, and rolling pins. I feel the yeast spreading, and the struggle of rising up.

I've longed for union with Godde all my life. This has been the driving motivation in everything: to taste and see. And though it seems that this prayer is being deferred. In reality, it's not. I just haven't been able to realize that the darkness I've struggled with most of my life does not mean El-Roi/El-Shaddai/YHWH/Yeshua, is not there. It might just be a blessing in disguise. I'm communing in the darkness Jesus experienced in his last hours. Or, at the very least, it's the outer darkness of purification. The fire of love in its severe form, burning away the chaff in me.

The rough edges are being softened. My impatience denied. My anger unraveling. I feel absolutely "stricken and afflicted." Not that I can compare myself to Job, my friend Cindy gets that honor, or Mother Teresa who experienced such inward darkness (oh, please, no no no no), but "though he slays me, still will I trust Him."

There will be a resurrection eventually.

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