We call her the Pie Fairy. Or maybe she’s a “he.” We’re not sure.
Our Household Skeptic, Lydia, warned me: “Don’t eat it, Mom. It could be, you know, … poisoned.” (Insert spooky movie theme-song here.)
She crossed her eyes and clutched her throat, enacting a death scene.
The witch in Snow White would have never tricked me into eating a poison apple. But pie? I’d have been a goner in a snap. So that explains why I grabbed a fork and a plate. I was willing to risk my life. You know, for the sake of the family.
Plus, my Prince Charming was on standby, in case a resuscitating kiss were in order.
Besides, we heard tell of other survivors. Several of the neighbors — all of them perfectly sane — had eaten their pies and lived to post photographs on Facebook.
Gramma T wrote on her Facebook status: “A car drives up, a woman huddled in her hood rings the doorbell, a strawberry pie is handed to us. … Sat right down and ate a big piece. YUM! God is Good!”
By my count, a couple dozen others have been RAOK’ed.
It’s the The Great Kindness Experiment of 2011, and it’s spreading. Even the local newspaper is hot on the trail of the story. A reporter called here yesterday, asking around.
We don’t know who is behind it, but we know why. This weekend, the Pie Fairy appeared on Facebook, as Matthew Raok. (You can friend him, if you like.) According to his vital statistics, he was born on Dec. 25, 1950, and we can presume his first name was inspired by the verse taped to the pies: Matthew 22:37-39.
I befriended Matthew and asked him, why all the pies?
“I hope that by receiving a pie, a few of the recipients will pay it forward to others,” Matthew wrote. “Everyone has different talents and gifts that they can use — some can bake, some can write words of encouragement, others can visit the sick or lonely, others have financial stability that they can use to bless others, while others can give a ride to someone without a car. It doesn’t matter if you do secretly like I did or do it openly; it’s the thought of going out of your way to help someone else to show Christ’s love that matters.”
Matthew continued: “Showing the love of Christ is something we all can do, in light of what we celebrate this week; I think it’s the least we can do.”
Today, we’ll share the last piece of pie — a slice of delicious grace. We’ll thank God for someone who cared enough to “pay it forward,” poison-free, thank you very much. And we’ll be on the lookout for ways to do the same.
Giving, you know, is contagious.
“If this continues to multiply,” Matthew wrote, “Just think of all the people that would be touched.”
All we know is this: A mysterious elf has been swooping onto front porches of our farming community, leaving strawberry pies at doorsteps and then disappearing faster than you can say “graham-cracker crust.”
My favorite farmer found our pie last Friday, on the seat of the old blue farm pickup.
We had been RAOK’ed. That’s shorthand for: Random Act Of Kindness.
The Pie Fairy taped a laminated bright-yellow note to the pie lid:
“For you, at this exact time, no strings attached, for one reason only … To Show You the Love of Christ.”
We set the pie on the kitchen table and gathered around the sweet specimen, blushing all crimson under the see-through plastic pie-lid. We turned the pie, lifted it up and examined it for fingerprints or hidden clues.