Lives of Service depend upon Lives of Support

Although I’m somewhat of a spiritual seeker, this blog is not about religion or religious viewpoints. But I confess that I was both incredulous and angry last week when a popular Christian tele-evangelist said that Haiti got what was coming to them.  They made a deal with the Mephistopheles?  I had to look the word up. Really Pat?  You believe that?  And you work to bring others around to that point of view?

I admit that I stood on the sidelines and cheered when one Lily Coyle aka Satan wrote a letter back thanking Pat Robertson for the shout out.

Then I heard a local religious leader say something quite provocative.  In his condemnation of the Mephistopheles comment, he said that he’d welcome a political leader who instead of saying “God bless America”, asked how America could bless God. Hmmmm.  Regardless of one’s faith or viewpoints, isn’t that a comment on servanthood and about taking actions that lead to a greater good?

Participating in Community Supported Agriculture is one way that my family and I work towards creating a healthier community.  In Barbara Kingsolver’s recent book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle,  her husband wrote that if every American ate only one locally grown meal each week, we would reduce our country’s oil consumption by over 1.1 million barrels of oil weekly.  Not to mention that we’d be contributing to our local economies as well as our own health and wellness. Of course, this isn’t a traditional path of servanthood and I’d strongly encourage everyone to seek out additional ways to contribute to those less fortunate but in our consumer society, we often shape community with our purchases.  Those actions become our opinions and our votes.  This week, seek out a restaurant that uses local produce or better yet, skip the meal and give what you might’ve spent to make a contribution to assist Haiti or another group in need.

Red leaf lettuce, harukei turnips and carrots

What small changes can you make in your consumption that will drive towards a greater good?

Servant Stew
Yields 8 hearty servings
  • 16 oz vegetable stock
  • 2 large carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 16 oz. can stewed Roma tomatoes broken up with a spoon.
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp mace
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 bay leaf

Place all ingredients in a large crock pot and cook on low for 4 – 5 hours.  Remove bay leaf before serving.  Share with others.

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  1. Any tips on how to find a restaurant that uses local products? May be you can do a future post on how to find and patronize businesses that use and sell local products.

  2. John Hamilton

     /  January 20, 2010

    One way to find locally supported restaurants in your area would be to enter “slow food” into the search criteria at Be sure to include the parenthesis so that the system knows you want those words together in that order. You might get some unwarranted hits based on contributor’s complaints about “slow food service”, but you will also get some referencing that particular restaurant’s participation in the slow food movement (refer to for more information).

  3. Rena

     /  January 20, 2010

    Thank you for the perspective….love the idea of what can each of us do….and that all of us doing something, even a seemingly small action makes a huge difference…keep writing Tammy!

  4. Excellent, Tammy. Glad you are dealing with this. If we can keep going deeper into root causes and effects, than we can make real change.

    Well, I’m going out to pick some kale and dig a potato from my garden! Doesn’t take much fuel or space to get to me!

  5. Linda Martin

     /  January 21, 2010


    I love what you are doing here! I’m not sure how you are finding the time, but kudos to you for making us think more and helping us find ways to support our community and world. You are my blogging role model~

  6. Lisa H

     /  January 23, 2010

    Eating local is becoming so much easier! One of my favorite local hang-outs is Bombero’s Cafe and Wine bar on Central just south of Dunlap. Attending any of the Saturday markets is a great family outing–take the dog, taste some samples, buy amazingly fresh and local produce.
    Great blog Tammy!

  7. I like what you say here, Tammy! And local food is great! I’m trying to incorporate it more into my life as well. And the slow food movement is wonderful! A few months ago I did a sermon that talked about slow food. (If you are interested, you can go to, click on Resources, then Launch Sermon Player. It is the 8/16/09 – Eating for Life sermon.)

    Keep writing!

  8. Merissa Cansibog

     /  January 30, 2010

    You article definitely was one of the high points of my Saturday. I was on Yahoo searching for something totally unrelated when the title caught my attention. I’m glad I took the time to read your blog!

    • Merissa,
      thanks for coming by. I did comment on your blog and misspelled your name. So sorry. I hope you’ll come by again in the future.


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