I’m gluten / lactose / soy free for medical reasons.  This means I can’t always enjoy the same foods that others might be able to eat.  Yesterday a phenomenal thing happened.  I walked into our monastery kitchen and our generous cook said to me, “Sister, I made you a cake.”  “Me?”  “Yes … and you can eat it!”  This lovely creation graced the steel counter top and I gazed at it in some wonder.  “No special reason,” she said.  “It’s just you don’t get to eat all the desserts I make for the others so I decided to bake you a cake!”

Have you ever had someone grace you with a spontaneous and unasked-for gift in this way?  In the midst of some trying days, this loving gift was treasured all the more.  I shared some generous slices with a couple of staff persons and enjoyed a piece myself.  I was touched by the baker’s tender regard and her sensitivity to my health needs.

For Christians, this is the holiest week of the year as we join to remember Jesus’ suffering, death, and resurrection.  Jesus’ self-gift is the best gift of all.  It’s as if he says to us, “No special reason.  I just love you.  That’s all!”  What an amazing tender regard our God has for each of us, for all of creation!

How will you share that tender regard in a spontaneous and unasked-for way this week?

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