Chaplain’s Chat: September 2022

September 3, 2022

Image of Rev. Peter Keady, CC, CCISM

For the Joy 

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been stopping at a few of the meal pickup locations. I attended the Lunch and Learn as well. I’ve so enjoyed

meeting various volunteers and staff of Meals on Wheels. You have blessed me in our conversations and in your sharing your story with me. I love hearing people’s stories.

In all my conversations with MOW personnel, there’s a theme underlying your service to others in delivering meals week in and week out. Sometimes it’s stated explicitly. At others it’s tangible, I can see it on your face and hear it in your voice. I think it’s greatly lacking in our society and I wish I could bottle and distribute it freely.

There’s a lot of pain and division in our world today. The last few years have not only taken a toll but shown what’s on the inside of many. I have a little saying, “We learn what’s inside a donut when we squeeze it.” Pressure and stress reveal what’s on the inside. I know it serves as a barometer for me. When I’m stressed and my actions and words are out of sync with what I hope I’m expressing, I take time to recalibrate. For instance, this past week my schedule was anything but predictable. So, this weekend I spent a few extra moments taking naps when I could. The older I get, the more I enjoy sleep.

So, when I engage MOW volunteers and staff week after week and I see a consistent flow of joy, I’m not only blessed but encouraged that the human spirit is strong and resilient.

When I’m stressed and my actions and words are out of sync with what I hope I’m expressing, I take time to recalibrate.

So many of you have a wonderful expression of joy in your service. A few of you have told me that delivering meals is a joy! You get fueled by caring for others who need a little help. You take from the reserves within and pour out into others. You do it for the joy; the joy given and the joy received as you engage clients with meals.

Yet, in all of this, from time to time, the pressures of living can get the better of us.

Sometimes just a nap will do! But in others, a caring person with a listening ear is needed. This is why Meals on Wheels has me, a Chaplain, available for you. I don’t replace your clergy. I’m not the silver bullet resolving all your ills. But my training in crisis and trauma, my twenty years in pastoral ministry, and my joy of serving you can be of assistance when you might need it. I want you to keep your joy flowing! I hope my service can help you through personal and even professional trials. In my faith, joy is a great motivator and helps keep us focused on what’s important. May you have great joy this week! I hope to see you soon!

Rev. Peter Keady, CC, CCISM
Chaplain, Meals on Wheels of the Greater Lehigh Valley

“Hidden joy is an extinguished candle”.  — Spanish Proverb