There’s been moments recently when an old habit has tried to creep back up. I’ll scroll through social media or read the news and feel like I’m not doing enough. It can be paralyzing until I remember that as long as I can still feel my heart burst open by an image and have sincere, thought provoking concern for fellow humans I’m likely okay.
I take a step back and remember what I’ve been called to do. Feed people. It’s only one of the many ways we collectively bring about restoration, but it’s my way to keep doing.
When people eat better they feel better. When people feel better, they learn to love themselves with more empathy and compassion. When they love their self, they love their family more authentically. Healthy families make room to love and care for their neighbors. While loving their neighbors they learn how to send that love out into their community. When they love their community from this place of health and compassion it continues to grow and serve all of humanity without notice of boundaries or borders.
From here I see that it’s not my work to simply feed people to satisfy hunger, but to see all people in their potential to become the hands that will one day serve me and others in our need.
It’s then that we find ourselves at peace and in communion with God for the renewing of all things barren and broken. It’s from this place that the spirit of Christmas and the joy that’s to come reveals itself to me.
This is a portrait of Michelle Howell, a hardworking farmwife, mother of five, author, and advocate. On the left side of the bust you can read text from the poem “Anyway” that was on a wall of Mother Teresa’s home for children in Calcutta, India. “If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.” “The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.”
Leslie Nichols, Artist