The Weight of a Snowflake


Happy New Year, all. I do hope yours is Happy, but I want to say that it feels like there is a deep feeling of despair among my circle of friends this winter. We all seem to be juggling work stress, caring for sick people we love, battling the often co-occurring illnesses of addiction and depression. We are stretching our resources of time, attention, patience, and money further than it seems they want to go, and then we turn on the news and listen to story after story about the violence, injustice, greed, scarcity and environmental degradation that plague our world. And all the bad news quickly paralyzes us into a dark fit of despair, and we decide our hands are tied; we can't do anything to alleviate the suffering of this world. 

I give thanks for a professor and mentor I had in seminary who encouraged me to let the world and its enormous problems in just enough to galvanize me to work towards their solutions. I used to think that big problems required big solutions. But in my almost seven years of doing this work at The Nashville Food Project, I have learned that answers cannot be imposed, they must come from within. I have learned that small work in a small place with small groups of people can have enormous impact on the health and well-being of an entire community. I have learned that solutions cannot be hurried, that hard questions need for patience, and that relationships and making common cause with others are the keys to making lasting change – no matter how big or small. 

Maybe some of you know this small story – someone told it to me when I was a teenager at church camp (talk about a small thing having a big impact), and it has honestly never left me. I hope you will take one minute of your day to read this winter tale, and find yourself encouraged. 

Grace and peace,