The Butter Cow!

Monique and I have been going to the Illinois State Fair together since we were in college. Living in Springfield now more than thirty years, I can’t remember too many times when we have missed the event and when we did, it was likely because we were out-of-state on vacation. So, this past Friday, we made yet another trek to the fair to check out the Craft's Building for this season’s garden products and watch a live cooking demonstration, enjoy the equine exhibition in the Coliseum and of course, eat our favorites of Vose’s Korndogs in addition to a pork sandwich and a lemon shake-up at the nearby Pork Pavilion!

2022 Butter Cow
by Artist Sarah Pratt

After making our rounds, we closed out the afternoon with a visit to the Dairy Building. There, we capped the day off with a cold treat of twisted and swirling chocolate and vanilla ice-cream in a cone. While touring the dairy products, it was hard not to gaze immediately upon the butter cow on display in the center of the exhibit. It's a perennial favorite!

After all these years, I’m still amazed at how the butter cow has gone through so many iterations! This year’s creation celebrated the artistic talents of Sarah Pratt who masterfully worked the theme of the fair, Grow with Us, into every movement of her butter trowel. It was fascinating to see what Pratt, along with so many artists before her, was able to do with one of the basic food staples of life!

I have a couple of sons-in-law who love their butter (and bacon too)! Most days, you will find a quarter pound stick or two of butter resting at room temperature near their gas stove tops! This soft and creamy staple is ready to be added to many of the culinary creations that these two capable cooks bring to their dinner tables. Butter has a rich history. Those who study its origins say it has been around for over 9,000 years! I wouldn’t want to sample that stick of butter no matter how golden and delicious it may appear!😉 I get a little nervous if our butter isn’t returned to the fridge the moment the meal is over!

In Genesis 18:8, some translators have used the word “butter” for what may have been a similar food item like curds or a yogurt-like substance. “Curds and honey” are referenced in one of the most inspiring Messianic passages of the Bible in Isaiah 7:15, 22. While Jesus did not add the word butter to the Model Prayer that was given to His disciples, He did teach them, (and us as well), to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread.” (Matthew 6:11). I say, with whimsical exaggeration, that this may have been an honest omission! Bread and butter go together at our house! I even regularly add honey to a dinner roll!

For years, I have enlarged the meaning of this prayerful petition, “Give us today our daily bread,” to include by application, all the needs of my life. For me, this phrase inspires me to pray for the spiritual sustenance of God’s grace to be applied to every need in my daily walk with Christ. I need God’s provision of hope, forgiveness, patience, faith, love, and especially, His Presence, in every situation I face. I have learned that God dispenses His daily provisions at just the time I have need of them. Not before, so that I am not tempted to try to stockpile them, but to remind me that God gives “daily bread” only when it is required. Then, I can see and be thankful for God’s faithfulness working in real time!

Make it your daily prayer to include this beautiful petition, “Our Father, give us this day our daily bread.” You will be amazed at how God provides!

Mike Keppler, retired pastor,
active churchman and
doting grandparent.

Check out this previous blog... Jelly Bread


  1. He is truly Jehovah Jireh! Never early and never late in providing our "Daily Bread"! Thanks for the reminder.

    1. Yes, our God provides! Good word, my dear friend!


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