Monday, November 8, 2010

Swirled Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bars & A Life Change

I'm having a swirled pumpkin cream cheese bar with a hot mug of chai tea while I write this.
A bite, set it down. Type. A sip, set it down. Type.
Not bad for a Monday night, eh?
Yes, I made another (delicious) pumpkin and cream cheese recipe. You can find it here.
Somehow I went 26 years without understanding the value of this combination, and you can bet that I will spend the next 26 years making up for it.

In other news, yes I have a life outside of pumpkin and cream cheese.
Let me tell you about one of its greater moments recently.
I had a chance to attend a presentation by a professor from Wheaton last week.
At some point in his delivery, he shared a quote from a book written by Henri Nouwen.
Upon hearing the quote, in a simple, unobserved moment, I felt changed.
What I'm sure was just a bullet point or another minute ticking by for everyone else in the room, felt like an epiphany to me.

"Listening is a form of spiritual hospitality."
-Henri Nouwen

Somehow, upon hearing that quote, that concept, I understand my life better.
I understand better what I've studied to do, what I love to do, what people tell me I do well.
(If there's anything I learned in grad school it was that counseling is actually more about listening than talking).
I love hospitality, and I learned it by example from my Momma.
But while I love to create beauty and make people feel welcome,
I like sitting and talking far better than cooking, doing dishes, and offering tea.

I love to make people feel welcome, as they are.
To make people feel comfortable, with who they are.
To invite people, to share their story.
I love to offer a safe space, where pain can be expressed.
To provide warmth, which brings comfort.
To feed, with words fitly spoken.
So, over a pumpkin bar and chai tea tonight, I'm thinking about how I feel changed.
Though nothing about me has changed, I feel that I am.
I think that's what happens when you see something about yourself or your life a little more clearly than before.

1 comment:

Carrie said...

Beautiful. I love those words by Nouwen. This is a needed perspective in a city full of rushed and de-personalized people. Thanks!