Friday, January 03, 2014

What does it mean to be really poor?

Two years ago I attended a Christmas outreach effort at Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale.  Our job was to work on an assembly line putting together a Bible, CD, DVD and Devotional to create a gift box for church members to give to friends and family. 

As we worked talk centered around holiday baking.  We discussed favorite recipes and the best place in town to get a giant bottle of vanilla - COSTCO!  One lady mentioned the Dollar Store in town sells Honey Wheat Bread for $1.00, which is typically around $2.00 at the regular grocery stores.  I launched into an epic tale of how I process pumpkins to save cost on buying canned pumpkin.

A lady to my left looked at me curiously and said, well how long do you have to cook the pumpkins in the oven?  About one hour I replied.  Her reply, I'll never forget it.  She said, I try not to leave my oven on for that long, it uses too much energy and costs too much.

There was a heavy pause.  I realized she was conveying her status in life.  This wasn't just a healthy competition of who can save the most money at the grocery store, no, this was a women who scraped together a life and was here, serving along side those with monetary privilege as equals.

I remember this women every Christmas as I turn on my oven to bake happily for hours. 

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