Friday, February 19, 2010

"The Generous Heart of a Stranger"

I usually awake each morning believing that there is more "right" than "wrong" in this world, more "good" than "evil", and that therefore, there is room to shift the pendulum more in the direction of "right".  The smallest of deeds and simplest of actions are so able to turn into waves of triumph with persistent effort -- so I keep on trying to do right.  Each day I attempt to do something positive, something to assist the needy, and hope that my small actions may make a difference to somebody, someday.   I am only one person, but I know that nothing is impossible, and the faith I have in the Man upstairs just puts a smile in my heart.  I am so grateful for what I have been given, and I know that prayer is a powerful force.  I pray for the homeless and the needy daily, and I believe that good will out-do evil everytime...

As a perfect example of the goodness that exists in the human realm:  I met with an acquaintance of mine who happens to own a neighboring business called "Wine Styles", and informed her about my endeavors of this project.  As I was informing her of the nature of our project, an additional patron joined us and she asked me if I would share with him the specifics of same.  I did, and he quickly reached for his wallet and handed me $60.00 to add to our Jar!!!  $60.00!!!  I was so touched and blown away by his generosity, but more importantly, amazed at how he understood our project's mission from the first few words!  This generous person, who was a complete stranger, cared enough about our task that he opened his heart and wallet knowing that he could make a difference.  He most certainly did as his gift put us close to $100.00 for this month's donation, and we are only mid-way thru February! 

When I began this project, I was hopeful--I was optimistic.  Now, I am inspired more than ever to witness generosity in the heart of a stranger...all because we care about the homeless and the hungry.  Caring matters.  I saw a great bumper sticker on a car the other day which spoke volumes.  It said, "Because nice matters".  Amen to that!

"A generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity."--Buddha  

This night's recipe was absolutely delicious -- my favorite so far!  So lean, and so tasty!!!  Enjoy!  It is from the "Cooking Light best recipes 2010" magazine.

Grilled Pork Chops with Shallot Butter
8 (7-ounce) bone-in center-cut pork chops
1 teaspoon salt, divided
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh chives
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 1/2 teaspoons minced shallots
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind

1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.

2. Sprinkle both sides of pork evenly with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Combine oil, chives, thyme, rosemary, and garlic, stirring well. Rub oil mixture evenly over both sides of pork. Place pork on grill rack; grill 6 minutes on each side or until a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of pork registers 155°. Remove pork from grill; let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.

3. Combine butter, shallots, and lemon rind, stirring well. Spread about 1 teaspoon butter mixture over each pork chop; let the pork stand an additional 5 minutes.

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