Early in life, I learned how skilled my mother was in baking fresh fruit and cream pies. Every Sunday at lunch, she would prepare different flavors for her family. During the summer, she liked to bake fresh blueberry pies. The focus of this week’s spiritual reflection was inspired by the memory of eating this delicious seasonal treat. With this in mind, I hope you will read and share the message of my blueberry pie fable with your family during your own Sunday Lunch.*1
“Here’s a little something for dessert. Hope you enjoy it,” Theodora offered.
“Thank you,” replied Vasili. After arriving home, he opened the pastry box and told his wife, “Isn’t that marvelous, a fresh homemade blueberry pie!”
“What’s so wonderful about that?” said Michelle. “You can purchase one at the grocery store or bakery anytime you want.”
Vasili objected: “I know, but this dessert was given to me for free. It was baked especially for me. It makes me feel special. It’s an unexpected gift.”
His wife Michelle was unrelenting: “Well, I can’t see anything so wonderful about a blueberry pie.”
“You just don’t get it, do you?” Vasili protested.
My brothers and sisters in Christ, one of life’s tragedies is that oftentimes we miss opportunities to appreciate the wonders around us… the kindness of neighborly consideration and the appreciation of the labors of others for all the small blessings we encounter that enhance our lives.
When we travel in our cars, do we ever pause to consider their inventors, the laborers who designed them, the mechanics, the auto dealers, the road builders, the traffic policemen, and the road clean-up crews? As we enter a bakery and purchase some delicious pastries, do we consider the farmers, the harvesters, the flour makers, the bakers and the sales clerks?
It is easy to live and see life primarily from our personal perspectives; to fall into the trap of being selfish and not see how countless others contribute to our health and happiness. And just as easily, we either forget, or worse, we choose not to give thanks to God and those He has enabled to support and improve our lives.
How often do we kneel down and express our thanksgiving to God for the blessings we have been given? Sure, it’s easy to do so at Thanksgiving and Christmas – they are joyful seasons that routinely help us pause and consider the wisdom and joy of gratitude.
This summer, may we choose to seek opportunities to relax, to share meaningful time with our family and friends, and to reflect on God’s presence in our lives. At the same time, may we return thanks to our Lord for the gifts He has entrusted to us.
Let us raise our spirits heavenward and with a sense of purpose to express our appreciation… to our families, friends, and co-workers for giving so much of themselves to make our lives meaningful and hopeful. Their love, trust, respect, and mercy encourage us; they inspire us to be a treasured and sought after member of God’s Holy Body.
King David addressed his thanksgiving to God with the following words: “I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the Lord; the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.” (Psalm 34:1-2) Glory to God in all things! Amen!
*1Thanks to my Presbytera Marinda for preparing the actual pie used in this fable.