Lunch after the tsunami (by A Simple Country Girl)

image courtesy of A Simple Country Girl

For those of you who don’t know, Darlene aka A Simple Country Girl, is taking a break from posting at her blog Aspire to Lead a Quiet Life in order to recover from a back injury and concussion. She did, however, manage to write this short story and has been kind enough to allow me to share it here. Please pray for continued healing and REST for my dear friend. Thanks again, Darlene.

Lunch after the tsunami

I mix frozen apricots with honey, spices and the morning’s leftover oatmeal. I slide the pan into a preheated oven as split pea soup simmers low. Cabbage, red bell pepper, celery, tahini paste, olive oil, and teriyaki sauce marinate cold in the fridge. For lunch I eat this food with thanksgiving and guilt. I find that the two opposites coat my tongue as if I had shaken them in a jar like I do my homemade vinegar and oil dressing.

As I eat my flavorful, nutrient-dense meal, I wonder what nourishment, beyond that of calories, is found in rescue-worker handled, Japanese rice balls. I sip very hot soup from a small spoon. Do the tsunami survivors drink water that is lukewarm? If it’s not from a bottle, but perhaps from a swimming pool like I saw in that on-line image, do they drink it anyway?

How dare anyone, anywhere, complain about food too bland and then have the audacity to ask for Tabasco sauce when across the ocean blue a black-haired mother tries to remember her daughter’s face, the very smiling face she gently cupped in her hands as they touched noses. That beautiful face is one that the mother tries to remember before the earth broke loose and waves swallowed her kin wholly away. Who dares think of hot sauce while countless mothers heave with unimaginable loss?

image courtesy of A Simple Country Girl

I swipe at my face with a folded cloth napkin and I watch my son soak his bread heavy with split pea soup. As he crams his mouth full over and over again with lunch, I wonder how many people in Japan are saying prayers of thanksgiving over sticky balls of rice. Do they know the God of heaven and earth? Have they met Him on bended knees? Will they see miracles in the madness that will lead them to the cross of Calvary?

I pull the bubbly dessert from the oven and as the door snaps shut I doubt hard about having lead anyone to Christ.

Then I think of the mother whose grip slipped and I wonder, would I, a Christian woman, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend, would I have tried to outrun the tsunami? Or would I have turned and faced it with screams of delight as it launched me into eternity? The taste of my apricot dessert soon fades because the flavors of thanksgiving and guilt are way too strong.

And I need a glass of water.

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