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Around Our Table: Not So Fine

I wrote you a pretty, no-strings-attached post for this morning. I even published it! It was all things fun and lighthearted. There were even tomatoes shaped like pears!

pear tomato

And then I un-published it.

Because I am currently not feeling fun and lighthearted and I wanted to start doing these Around Our Table posts to share more of me and Beau. More of who we really are.

And right now I do not feel fine.

My heart has been very heavy this past week. It started with the news about the little Syrian boy whose body was found washed up on shore. It started because of more news on the absolute deplorable acts done by ISIS. This post broke me in two and I know it’s heavy, but we need to know: Dear Aylan … dear world with a refugee crisis, dear all of us who have needed to be welcomed in.

The heaviness continued to press in when I listened to the NPR podcast from This American Life called The Problem We All Live With. Listen?

“Right now, all sorts of people are trying to

rethink and reinvent education, to get poor

minority kids performing as well as white kids.

But there’s one thing nobody tries anymore,

despite lots of evidence that it works:

desegregation. Nikole Hannah-Jones looks at a

district that, not long ago, accidentally launched

a desegregation program. First of a two-part


I was driving and listening and I literally had to turn if off in the middle of it because I was getting so angry that this issue was taking place in 2013… & that it’s still taking place. I pulled into my driveway feeling so emotionally uncomfortable. My heart was a mess of anger, sorrow, helplessness…

And then there was a huge storm that was heading for the Dominican Republic and Haiti. One of the bloggers that went on a trip with us to the Dominican Republic, Ruth Soukup, posted this and it was just so right:

“My heart right now is with this sweet girl, and with the two other precious girls we sponsor in the Dominican Republic. Just a few minutes ago I was reading the latest updates on Tropical Storm Erika, wondering whether my plans to fly to Grand Rapids on Monday morning might be affected & feeling slightly annoyed. And then I saw that the storm is about to hit the DR, & remembered visiting Darlene and her family in their tiny shack of a house along the river. They had no furniture because when it rains, it floods, and they lose everything. I don’t know where Darlene & her family are right now, but I pray they are safe. Will you join me tonight in praying for Darlene, and for Darismel & Evileidy and all the other kids & families whose lives are about to be torn apart again by this storm? Poverty on this scale is hard to comprehend if you haven’t seen it firsthand, but please believe me when I say that what might be little more than an inconvenient delay for me could very well be a matter of life or death for them.”


(Praise God, this storm missed the DR and Haiti.)

And I remembered standing in that home with her and how desperate the situation was. And how I was able to leave and go back home.

Also, I read this post this week, which was excellent but also highlighted the haunting issue of how helping can hurt.


So I’ve been going through this week in a bit of a haze. So incredibly sleepy, but really I think I just wanted to shut down my mind, my heart…everything. And then when bedtime does come I can’t sleep because my mind is buzzing: how can I help? and who do I help? and why? Why. Why. All the whys.

(UPDATE: Great post on how we can help the refugee crisis now. We cannot ignore this.)

So I’m just sitting with it right now. Which feels brave. Praying. Sharing with you. I’m reading up on how I can get involved. I’m grateful to be working for an organization that does so much good work in the broken world.

And lastly, this:

100 Black Men Wearing Suits Greeted Kids On The First Day Of School For An Incredibly Vital Reason

I read this article this morning and my heart jolted alive. Because I remembered that there is also so much good.

So there I am. A very not so ok Bri. But thank you for being here with me. I hope you take the time to read and listen to the above. It is hard to enter into but it is also what is happening in this world we are living in.

How are you today? Brighter, I hope.

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  • AimeeSeptember 4, 2015 - 6:09 pm

    Bri… my heart hurts too & I am not so OK either. Here are some of my reflections and why my heart, though heavy, still dares to hope:

    Side note: the post is sprinkled with photos from our recent trip to Guatemala to visit our Compassion daughter Esperanza.ReplyCancel

    • Bri McKoySeptember 4, 2015 - 6:36 pm

      Thank you so much for sharing your post, Aimee. I devoured it! And the hope! So grateful for you! xoxoReplyCancel

  • BrandySeptember 6, 2015 - 12:30 am

    I just want to say how refreshing this post was. I so appreciate your blend of authenticity and hope. Your message of “the world is not okay, but we can’t give up.” I am honored and privileged to call you my friend!ReplyCancel

    • Bri McKoySeptember 7, 2015 - 5:00 pm

      Brandy! Your words always mean so much to me. Thank you for your encouragement and for your beautiful heart. You are such a gift to me!ReplyCancel

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Welcome! I'm Bri! Accidental home cook. Lover of gathering people around a table over a meal. Author of Come & Eat (September 2017). What I really want is to pull out a chair for you at my table. But until then, I hope you stay awhile and enjoy my stories + recipes!

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