Sisters Tatyana, Anna, and their mother Anna are Ukrainian immigrants who, along with their families, have lived in my neighbourhood for the past 20 years. These families attend a local American church, and the ladies say that their American friends love the Ukrainian soups that they bring to their weekly church potluck.
Nextdoor is a social network app that serves as a platform for neighbours to report on local news and events. I was intrigued by one posting that I noticed a couple of weeks after our coronavirus “Stay Home — Stay Healthy” policy was initiated.
In this posting, Mom Anna and her daughters Tatyana and Anna introduced themselves, offering to deliver homemade Ukrainian soup to anyone in need in our neighbourhood during this time of crisis. They made it clear that their motivation for this generous offer was their love for Jesus. They said that it was also their way of showing their gratitude for the blessings that they have received since coming to the USA years ago with nothing in their pockets. Because so many people are out of work right now, I know that this practical offer of help must be a godsend for some in my community.
“Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing? When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!'” (Matthew 25:27-40 NLT)
I am not in true need because God has so graciously provided for me. Nonetheless, I love trying various ethnic foods, so I hesitantly asked if I could request some soup in exchange for some homemade cookies. I enjoyed homemade borsch for the next couple of days — and Taty said that their children loved the brownies!
As this Ukrainian family’s offer has continued, I can see that neighbours have taken notice of their kindness and generosity, and their delivery list is growing. What a shining testimony this is for the love of Christ to our world! My light for Jesus may be a little glowing ember on my street, but Taty, Anna, and Mom Anna’s light is a blazing bonfire on the hilltop!
“In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16 NIV)
Prayer: Dear gracious Father, thank You for Your provision of our daily needs. Please provide for those in need during this time of worldwide trouble, and give to those of us who love You generous and grateful hearts for Your care for us. Amen.
Portland, Oregon, USA