My favorite method of food donation has backfired, and I’m standing here with soot on my face. I need help.
A long time ago I read an article that changed my perception, about a family that donated food to a needy family only to need it later themselves. They received back their own donation only to see what awful, useless food they’d donated. Since they, they’ve always donated their favorite and most indispensable foods.
In that same spirit, I use the BJ’s method of food donation: I buy multipacks and donate from that, and thus the recipients are eating exactly what we do. That way, if Jesus asks me to account for myself, I can point to our own family menus.
Over the weekend, I made hamburgers. Our ketchup bottle was out, so I went into the pantry to find the new one. When it didn’t show up immediately, I said, “Well, it came as a twin pack. I’ll just grab the one I was going to donate, and I’ll replace it later with the one in the pantry.”
I even laughed and said, “My scrupulous heart feels awful about taking ketchup from the mouths of starving children.”
Here’s the awful thing: after dinner, we looked again, and the bottle of ketchup has vanished. We have no idea where it went, but it’s totally gone. Poof!
My Patient Husband swears he didn’t use it to pay a gambling debt. My son’s friends did not swipe it from the house in order to fulfill the final wish of a dying great-grandmother to taste ketchup before she passes on. No one broke in and found only a 25 ounce bottle of ketchup to sell on the black market. So where is it?
For this scrupulous soul, it’s a disaster: I took a poor family’s ketchup.
Let me go one worse: what if I already donated the other bottle? That’s the worst case scenario because if it’s already donated, I’ll never find the bottle. Meaning, I’ll never be able to make this right.
(Please, those sane among you: don’t point out that if I already donated it, there’s no wrong to make right. You’re making sense. In general, I don’t.)
In short, I’m in a monumental amount of spiritual trouble here that can only be resolved buy purchasing more ketchup.
Except that then, I’ll feel like I’m “behind” by a bottle of ketchup.
Doomed, I tell you. Totally doomed.