Friday, October 18, 2013

Diving for the Salad

I helped make a dinner for a very special event.  I made the salad, cake, and breadsticks.  I wanted to make it by hand, so money could be saved overall.  After the dinner, a lovely person started to help with the clean-up in the kitchen.  The bowl of salad was half full still; this person took it to the trash and started dumping the bowl of delicious salad with all kinds of expensive, healthy ingredients into the trash!!

As people mingled- oblivious to the falling salad- I moved in superhuman motion and dove across the room.  I caught the salad before it touched the rest of the trash in the bin.  (She didn't know I was the one who cooked most of the food in the kitchen.)

I didn't even have time to think about what I was saying.  I yelled out in desperation something along the lines of, "No!  What are you doing?  You can't do that!"

Everybody stopped talking to look at what I was sacrificing my dignity to save.... it was embarrassing to be saving the salad with such vigor.  Abe's dad broke the silence when he said with a little chuckle, "You've gotta understand... Rachel doesn't throw anything away."

I was raised to not waste anything.  My mother always said that God is watching how I value what I've been given, so HE can bless me with more.  At this point in our lives, I REALLY wasn't going to waste...even a few tomatoes, onions, and lettuce.

I laughed it off, and then a good friend approached me later.  I told her how I dove for the food like a desperate, crazy woman.  She laughed too.  Then I told her how sad I really was to feel so much desperation towards every morsel of food.  We have PLENTY of food, but I'm well aware that as the weeks continue with no significant income, we are becoming more and more dependent upon my husband's parents for our basic needs.  (I really love my independence, so this is very hard.)

She suggested that maybe I am learning more compassion for those in these situations.  I argued that I already had a lot of compassion for these situations because I have been taught to value every penny I have.  I don't spend my money frivolously, and I grew up watching every penny we spent.

This whole week I have been trying to ask God what HE wants me to learn instead of why we have to pass through this.

All of a sudden it hit me.  I didn't need more compassion for those who didn't have money as much as I needed more compassion for those who have a hard time finding a job.  Finding a job has always come easily for me when I have been in the workforce.  It always seemed like the perfect opportunities just fell into my lap, so it has been hard for me to understand why others couldn't just find a job when there seem to be so many jobs available.  Oh my eyes and heart have been opened as Abe applies for every job he sees.  My pride is being broken down to have more compassion for those who have struggled for years with jobs and other financial stresses.

I'm grateful for my opportunity to dive for the salad, so I could ponder on what the Lord is trying to teach me with my new perspective.