I confess: It’s been 10 days since my last pie. Time to get back in the apron.
I guess I was in a bit of a dry spell. Often when I bake pies, it gives me a chance to slow down and think. Recent days have been full of thinking, but short on slowing down, so I am thankful for the chance to bake a bit today.
The best thing about the pies I bake is giving them away, so when I go too long without giving, I start to feel weird. Too much time to focus on myself. I have certainly learned this as a central truth in my life:
If you feel down, look up.
If you feel needy, give.
If you feel lonely, love.
Someone must have known I needed perspective, because I got some today.
At church, I learned of a woman who is going through a hard time–AGAIN. She has been seriously ill for quite some time, and this week, her father passed away. I’m not close friends with her, but my heart felt so heavy for her. It wasn’t so long ago that I lost my Dad, and that’s big grief, for sure. But I wasn’t sick. Not a bit. I’m gonna be all right, and she is still sick. Fair? Definitely not.
Once again, I’m reminded of how fortunate I am. My problems may seem big on any given day, but they’re really quite small when you look at the big picture. It seems my gratefulness was having a dry spell of its own. Looking inward too much turns into a big dry, scratchy desert of selfishness. And when the gratefulness comes back–when finally manage to look outward and reach out to others–it’s like a much-needed rain for our souls. Thirst-quenching.
Since I don’t know a way to ease this woman’s pain, I took her a pie. She lives with her family, and I’m sure they, too, must be so weary from this endurance race they’re all in. I hope that a taste of something sweet will give a moment’s relief. And if it doesn’t, I pray that they’ll at least know someone cares about what they’re going through.
The pecan pie I baked was pretty standard. Lots of nuts, sugar, butter and corn syrup–recipe was from a church lady cook book. In the bottom of the pie, however, I added some chocolate and butterscotch chips. I know they’ll taste fine, but they’re sort of symbolic.
It’s about what’s underneath. The surface of some things, like pecan pie, seems predictable. We think to ourselves, “I know how this is going to turn out.”
But sometimes–not every time–there’s something unexpected underneath. Something sweeter. Something different. I pray that this family, and so many others who are struggling, will find something unexpectedly sweet underneath their circumstances.
Today, I wish you renewed thankfulness, and something sweet in the midst of your circumstances.