Stormy Weather

bowl full of pomegranate seeds

hot cup of Hoji-cha green tea

seed cookie

struggling with giving more…

For two days I have baked, but haven’t blogged. Wednesday I made two lovely loaves of molasses bread and shared them with the folks at church. During Advent we have a paraklesis every Wednesday, then a short teaching, then a soup dinner… Homemade bread is always welcome and it’s great to see the folks enjoying it with such vigor during this time of fasting.

Yesterday I shared a loaf of French bread with Kh. Jan, Father Nicholas and their dinner guests. They are the ultimate givers. If I could, I’d make them a loaf of bread every day.

And there’s the rub. Even though I’m enjoying baking bread and giving it away in these small doses, I’m struggling that we’re not doing more. So many pleas are coming in the mail and we just can’t write any more checks. And it’s freezing at night, literally, and despite California being a haven for homeless folks, freezing weather is freezing weather. And when it rains, I feel guilty, sitting here sipping my tea, Dragon Tales on in the background, the dishwasher and heater humming…

Last week I met a young girl who held a sign asking for help. I stopped. I didn’t used to stop. I chatted with her and heard a bit of her story. She was so cute with her clean, round face surrounded by a colorful knit Scandinavian hat. I asked her her name and took her phone number–said I’d call. Even thought about offering my office as a place to sleep.

For days I felt guilty, her name coming to mind over and over–and yet I wouldn’t call. On the one hand my heart seems to be softening and on the other hand I see just how hard I am.

So, it continues to rain, and I continue to bake, and drink my green tea in my cozy home.

My friend, who works with the homeless day in and day out, says you just need to be satisfied with what you can do right now. That the guilt can overwhelm you and drag you under.

Baby steps.

The thought of Cheyenne weighs heavy on my mind. I never should have said I’d call–it was a false thing to do–just something that made me feel oh-so pleased with myself at the moment. I deserve an entire lecture on good intentions.

If you have any words of wisdom for stormy days like this–I’d love to hear your thoughts…