The Parable or Miracle of the Lentil Soup

From Julia Palmer.

As some of you may remember Raphe and I have been living in Istanbul, for our third visit of 3 months. How we managed to make our return journey in these extraordinary times is another story.
While we were there we ate rather a lot of Chorba, a delicious lentil soup, nutritious and very affordable, and eaten all over the Middle East.

Back in the UK last week, when making my first batch of Chorba back in my kitchen, I kept thinking of our friends Peter and Dalia, especially Dalia who first introduced us to the weird practice of a soup served with a quarter of lemon. I even took a photo of the soup, as one does with any new food event these days, meaning to post it to her and catch up with her. But as we’ve all been deluged with thoughts and need to contact loved ones, I didn’t get around to it.

The next morning, we met for our weekly Zoom prayer meeting with the FFS leadership group. At the end of the prayers, I mentioned that as yet we hadn’t filled our empty studio apartments with a key worker who needs to self isolate. We were perplexed as to why no one had taken up the offer. It was suggested that we contact the hospital/NHS directly, so 5 minutes after our prayer meeting I remembered Peter and Dalia. Both of them being Drs they might know who to speak to, so we emailed them.

5 minutes later an excited Peter was on the phone. He and Dalia had just been on their knees praying for their very difficult situation.

They have a severely handicapped “vulnerable” daughter and so Peter who is in charge of GP’s in the NE Hants trust had had to practice on line from home for the last two weeks. They were considering the difficult task of sealing up a room for isolation, as Peter desperately needed to be able to get into hospital. As they only live in the next road, moving into one of our studio units would be ideal. They came to visit the room 5 minutes later, and all beams and smiles of relief from them. We talked at a safe distance over the courtyard, and Dalia thought we should call it the Miracle or Parable of the Lentil Soup, I’m not sure theologically which!

Who knows what might happen when we tune into those promptings to be in touch for a friend or family, and our neighbour maybe next-door or the other side of the world.

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