When Someone is Hurting, Bake a Cake

Profound joy of the heart is like a magnet that indicates the path of life. One has to follow it, even though one enters into a way full of difficulties. -Mother Theresa

My daughter, sister and I heard the sirens close by as we walked down the street after dinner. I had a dreaded feeling in my heart … the sound was way too near to our home. Which neighbor would it be this time?

She came running out of the house, arms to the sky, yelling … no! no! no! …. crying ….

The ambulance and fire trucks pulled up. The neighbors came out of their houses. It was a sad day. Life would never be the same again. Wally was gone.

My daughter turned to me and said, Mom, let’s bake a cake.

So the next day, we looked for the most beautiful orchid we could find to take to our dear neighbor.

And then we baked a cake.

It’s just what we do.

Whether life or death, a birth or an exit from this world.

We bake a cake.

Everyone has different priorities, passions, and callings in this life. That is what makes us unique. But what happens when we quit doing what we know we should do?

A simple act of love for us is to be there for our neighbors.

Joyce Meyer wrote some challenging words that I want to share with you:

One of the ways we make our lives so complex is when we veer off course and ignore what is really important to us. If we put aside our own hearts and follow what the worlds thinks we should and ought to do, we will find ourselves unfulfilled and empty.

Life will be tasteless.

We will go through the motions, but nothing will satisfy us.

What do you want out of life?

Some people spend so much time meeting what they think their obligations are, that they don’t even know what they want. They never ask themselves because they figure it is way out of reach.

It takes boldness to follow your heart, even sometimes in the smallest things.

Hospitality can be as simple as reaching out to a neighbor, to someone who is hurting that you don’t even know.

It can be as simple as baking a cake.

What is a way that you show love to those hurting around you?

(Above recipe, No Peel Apple Cake, is what I bake/take to others quite often. It’s easy and the recipe is in my book.)

22 comments on “When Someone is Hurting, Bake a Cake”

  1. Pingback: Day 10. Neighbors. Acorn Squash Basil Soup. | reluctantentertainer.com Reluctant Entertainer I Sandy Coughlin - Lifestyle, Entertaining, Food, Recipes, Hospitality and Gardening

  2. I am BIG card giver, for occassions and just-because. Love getting them in the mail, too!

  3. I share from my kitchen too, usually cookies or cake. It always means so much to people that you take time to bake for them. Once, many years ago, I had a friend that had surgery. I made fried chicken and scalloped potatoes for her when she got home. She still remembers that to this day(30 some years ago!).
    Joyce Meye’rs words are so true.

  4. It’s always a cake for me too. When my neighbour’s husband was diagnosed with cancer aged 49, he didn’t want to eat when he came home after his surgery. I left an Irish tea loaf on their doorstep, rang the bell and sneaked away. Carole told me later that he said “who was at the door?”, she replied “someone left a cake”, and he said “Oh? Maybe I’ll try a slice of that!”. I wish he was still here for me to feed up, but I’m so glad I could do a tiny thing to lighten things up a little.

  5. What a lovely post. So sorry to hear of yours neighbours loss though. And Joyce Meyers words are very very true.

  6. Or bake cookies, add in some good tea bags, and a book. Also, a candle.

  7. I’m sorry for your neighbor’s loss, Sandy. That’s tough. Your daughter’s first response made me smile. She done good! Cheers.

  8. When my friend was recovering from cancer surgury and had just lost her husband I went and cleaned her house, threw out garbage and took her recycles to the post. I came with 2 bags of groceries and cooked single sized meals for her and wrapped them for the freezer for reheating. I changed her bedding and did laundry, washed out the fridge. My family cleaned the carpets, washed floors and did the windows. We watered the garden and raked the lawn and swept the front walk. I visited every other day and just let her talk when she needed to. Even though she doesn’t live close by anymore I try to call and make sure she is still doing well. Sometimes we have to remember to be “our brothers keepers”.

  9. If I were to bake a friend a cake, that would be an overwhelming gesture for them. I just am not into food for comfort. But…today, we have a big storm brewing so I went out and cut all my peonies. And gave some to a neighbor, and met her for the first time. More than likely, I’d come over to your house and clean your kitchen for you. And sit and listen.

  10. I usually make banana bread or a fruit basket.

  11. As someone who lost their home to a fire last year I can attest to how important these type of things are. We had neighbors feed us for days and the love that was shone through those meals will never be forgotten. Your neighbors are lucky to have you Sandy.

  12. Beautiful post. I, too, share my food whenever I’m attempting to comfort the hurting. I also share my time with them, and, of course, send up many prayers on their behalf. The simple things in life are truly the best.

  13. Food is the universal language of love! Thanks for the encouragement to show love with a cake.

  14. Food is always a good thing and a way to show you care. It meets such a basic human need and can usually lead to other ways to help someone who is in crisis.

  15. Yes, bake a cake…..because sometimes, conversation over a piece of cake and a glass of milk with a friend/neighbor is a perfect way to say “I care about you” or “Welcome to our neighborhood!”

    These are the simple things that draw us together, you know…..

    Great post!!

  16. such a sweet post! I could have used one this month. Can’t wait to see you in July!

  17. Oh Sandy…I am so sorry to hear about your neighbor’s loss. But I am so glad that you are near by to her to offer her much needed comfort.

    Your daughter is so sweet…you have taught her so well…sharing in your spirit of hospitality.

    Thank you so much for sharing this story with us and the beautiful quotes. I love Mother Theresa. And Joyce Meyers quote was spot on!

    When people around me are hurting, I often try to bring them some sort of comfort food…usually a soup…and then I just sit with them. Sometimes to talk but often to listen. The gift of listening can often be the greatest comfort of all.

    Have a wonderful week.


  18. I bake, too. And, oftentimes set up a care calendar. To learn more go to http://www.carecalendar.org It is a great tool to use to get a community of friends and neighbors working together.

  19. Baking is my first reaction too. There is love in food and caring when given to those hurting. I even remember coming home from the hospital the day my mom died and baking a cake. It’s all I knew to do at age 16. My mom loved her kitchen time and that’s how I felt I could best honor her.

  20. Sweet, sweet post –

    There’s so much love in the simplest of things –

    Thank you –

  21. Love this act of kindness. Love the quote you posted. Both are such great things to remember. Always feel better reading your blog.

  22. I love it that your daughter “gets it” on her own. Well done, mama!!

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