It was a beautiful April day, that was until Blue Bell Creamery put out a voluntary nationwide recall. It was the great Blue Bell famine of 2015. The long, scorching days of summer dragged on without the palpable taste of Blue Bell on my tongue. The anguishing outcries were felt across the world (that is, if you are on social media). What will I do? How will I survive?!
Then, it happened. On August 31, after four agonizing months, select cities were blessed with the miraculous presence of Blue Bell ice cream in their stores. Crowds rushed to the market. Stores were forced to place purchase limits. People went from one store to the next to satiate their family’s longing and hunger for their desired flavors. Carpool schedules and extra curricular activities were disrupted. Social media erupted as Blue Bell made the Top Five trending topics on Twitter. Fans demanded a national holiday for the return of Blue Bell.
All of this for ice cream. Ice cream, people!
I was astounded as my newsfeed blew up with people sharing the struggle to find Blue Bell in stores; amazed at the determination people had to disrupt their schedules and drive from one store to the next to get the flavor each of their kids desired; astonished at the passion and desire to share with others their joy when they finally obtained a gallon of Blue Bell. I couldn’t begin to count how many pictures I saw of people posting of the ice cream and videos of Blue Bell trucks driving to make deliveries. Media outlets released the address of every grocery store in their town receiving a shipment. People stocking grocery stores freezers with Blue Bell were called heroes. And there was some definite Blue Bell binging in the late hours of the evening.
And all of this for ice cream.
It was beautiful to see people’s passions and desire come alive. To see that they hungered so greatly for Blue Bell that they disrupted their schedules, figured out different carpooling situations for their children, and even drove to store after store for that refreshing taste of ice cream. People wanted to share this joy with family and friends. They wanted their children to experience the zeal of the scrumptious, savory, cool flavors on their tongues.
It was beautiful…and sad.
- When was the last time you were so passionate about your faith that you allowed your zeal for Christ to disrupt your schedule?
- Have you ever longed to sit in Christ’s presence so much that you drove from Church to Church until you found one that had exposition of the Blessed Sacrament?
- Have you hungered for the sacraments so greatly that you rearranged carpool, extra curricular activities, and dinner in order for each person in your family to get to Confession and experience freedom from their sins through the Sacrament of Reconciliation?
- Have you hungered for Christ and loved Him so passionately that you couldn’t help but share your joy with friends, family, and anyone who will listen?
- Have you yearned to follow Him so much that you can’t wait to reach out and help someone in need?
I don’t ask these questions to judge or patronize, rather, to simply put things in perspective. I saw many people who were overtly passionate about the return of Blue Bell but seem covert about their faith. It led me to do a gut check as well. When I’m craving ice cream or my sweet tooth is raging I go out of my way to satiate that desire, but when I’m struggling spiritually I don’t always treat it with the same sense of urgency to place myself before the Lord in His sacraments or set an appointment with a priest or spiritual director to help me discern the longings and desires of my heart.
So I submit the question to you. In your heart of hearts, what is it that you truly hunger for? Who is it that you truly desire? If you’re unsure, I encourage you to look at how you spend the majority of your time each week because we give the most time to our greatest priorities. Most importantly, what is Christ calling you to this week?