Then Jesus told them another parable: 'The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.'
(New Revised Standard Version)
During the Cov-19 crisis I have gone back occasionally to making bread. There's something about the way the yeast transforms the flour into a living material by starting a fermentation process. Then there is the wonderful feel of kneading the bread as it grows more elastic, until voila it rises and is ready for the oven.
However, bread made using yeast is actually unleavened bread. 'Leaven' means the lump of sourdough that is broken off and mixed with flour and water, and from which the new loaf rises. We had starter sourdough in the house during lockdown, which is fed with more flour and water and left to rise. It's more fiddly although it can be used for years.
So what is this little parable of the woman making bread about? Well leaven changes the flour and water to make more leaven. Through God's love our souls are slowly changed into His likeness if we turn to Him. It's a companion parable to the one we had yesterday. From such tiny beginnings God's Kingdom begins to grow in people and in the world. You may feel it's one step forward and one back some days, but if you let Him God will help us all to grow spiritually.
as leaven changes the flour and water into bread,
so we ask Your help in changing us
that we may become the kind of people
You would have us be -
loving and generous,
prayerful and faithful,
concerned for justice for all,
and working for Your Kingdom.