(This entry is in honor of Ministry Appreciation Month on incourage.me)
Norman is this man at my church who wears a suit and tie every week. He hands out bulletins and helps with snacks. He smiles at you when you walk by, but he's quiet. And Norman is one of the big reasons lots of families all over Columbia have ended up staying at our church. Turns out Norman is not only a helper in snack organization; he is also the weekly provider. Norman goes out every week and he buys chips, and trail mix, and cookies (lots and lots of cookies), and sweet rolls, and brownies, and other delicate pastries, and coffee creamer, and sugar, and juice, and all the pieces that make up Sunday morning fellowship. He doesn't get reimbursed. He just does it. The spread is amazing, and the kids are happy. We visited lots of churches. Some had pretzels, some had cookies, some had juice, but none had it all. Except our church. And it's OUR church because the first Sunday we visited, my kids didn't want to leave. And they didn't want to visit anywhere else again. And we haven't.
We did go to church out of town once. They didn't have any snacks at all. The kids almost cried. The sermon? Well, now, how can you hear that when your kids keep looking for the juice? They missed Norman. They missed their double chocolate gourmet sandwich consisting of two double chocolate cookies held together with a pound of icing and rolled in sprinkles.
Talk about gathering the flock. Norman has gathered several. And none of us ever want to leave.