"If the God you believe in as an idea doesn’t start showing up in what happens to you in your own life, you have as much cause for concern as if the God you don’t believe in as an idea does start showing up. It is absolutely crucial, therefore, to keep in constant touch with what is going on in your own life’s story and to pay close attention to what is going on in the stories of others’ lives. If God is present anywhere, it is in those stories that God is present. If God is not present in those stories, then they are scarcely worth telling." ~ Frederick Buechner

02 January 2011

Did You Ever Have to Eat Mustard Sandwiches?

I was watching a biographical documentary on Shania Twain, and in describing how she grew up in complete poverty, she mentioned that she went to school with plain mustard sandwiches to "save face" because it was too embarrassing to show up to school day after day without a lunch.

Thinking, "Wow, that's pretty poor," I turned to Nich and said, "Did you ever have to eat plain mustard sandwiches for lunch?" He shook his head and said, "No, mayonnaise. That's how I developed a taste for Miracle Whip."

It's when I hear stories like this, especially from my husband (and I've heard a few from his childhood), that my heart breaks. I don't understand how some people have so much that they grow obese and others have so little that they have to live on things like mustard or mayo sandwiches, especially little children who need protein, vitamins, grains, and all that other good stuff to grow.

It actually makes me cry from time to time to think about these things.

I said to Nich, "That's so sad."

And being the cheerful soul that he is, he responded, "Children are resilient. A kid can learn to like what's available."

I hope we can avoid ever having to live in such poverty, but even more, I pray that our family will always have compassionate eyes and hearts to see and give to those around us who have even less than we do.

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