Do I look like a super-hero?
I am a quite ordinary stay-at-home mom and blogger. We're a dime a dozen. It's the best disguise since the mild-mannered reporter.
But let me tell you how I am saving the world one tamale at a time.
Last Friday after spending the day subbing at the local high school, I ran multiple errands culminating in a plan to take my side-kick to Walmart to buy a birthday present for the party coming up in an hour and half. We hopped out of the car and were approached by a poorly dressed man much larger than myself who said in a nearly incomprehensible Spanish accent, "Want to buy some tamales?"
With my super-Spirit vision I recognized Him. What a strange place to run into Jesus. Of course I had to have two bags of tamales. Half an hour later as I was leaving the parking lot, from her booster in the back, my side-kick spotted an elderly man on the side of the road. His sign said "Disabled Vet/Anything will Help." When she saw he was hungry, she asked if we could stop. I almost turned her down (I try to give food and not money) when I spotted the tamales in the front seat. I pulled back around and sent my side-kick with a warm tamale and a "God bless you."
I'm not really a super hero. And I'm not bragging either. It's little enough to buy tamales or give them away. Five minutes out of my day. But see here is the thing. Our country is turmoil and needs people to bridge the divide.
We've talked a lot recently about being more vocal, speaking up for peace and love in a world of bellowing rage. (Welcome to the Jungle, To Speak or Not To Speak). But we all know that talking is a bare first step. We need to take positive action.
As a Christian I believe that how I treat the alien and stranger represents how I treat my Lord (Matthew 25:31-46). Once long ago, He left heaven itself to migrate to Israel. On the political spectrum this stance puts me on the left. As a Christian I believe that we are called to honor our government which includes honoring its servants and its commitments (1 Peter 2:17). I think we should give our veterans all the care we owe them, in fact, all the care we can. That opinion places me solid on the right.
But with one tamale, purchased from a recent immigrant whose family is working together to make honest money, and given with my warmest prayers to a veteran who needs it, I am standing in the gap. Not the gap between left and right though that is certainly true, but the gap between what I say and what I do.
Do I want peace? I need to be a peacemaker.
Do I want love? I need to love everyone I meet.
Do I want honest work and honest wages in my community? I need to buy tamales.
Do I want someone to help the homeless? I need to put my tamale where my mouth is!
Do I want my child to be generous? I need to yank open the tamale sack and let her give him one.
Do I want equality? I need to show the same care to the kids I sub for, the immigrant in the Walmart parking lot, and the homeless veteran at the street corner.
Be a hero in disguise. Save the world--one act of kindness at a time.