Monday, October 17, 2011
I went on a retreat this weekend. Boy, did I need a break. I got away with a group of people that I didn't know from a church that I don't go to. We went to a camp about an hour outside of Austin and we retreated. In another post I'll tell you some of the realizations I had about church retreats but tonight I want to tell you what I learned about church people.
First of all, these people that I retreated with were some of the friendliest people I have ever met. There are a lot of similarities between Denver and Austin but Austin beats Denver hands-down for friendliness. There didn't seem to be any cliques and almost everyone at the retreat (60 ppl) introduced himself/herself to me. I didn't have a "come to Jesus" moment at the retreat, but that's not really what I was looking for. It feels like I have a "come to Jesus" moment almost daily...what I was looking for was rest. And I got it. And you know, I also got some clarity. But again...that will be for another post.
We left the camp at noon yesterday and drove to Marble Falls for lunch. Seven of us girls sat in a booth and when our waitress came over and introduced herself, a few of the girls asked her how her day was going and she said something about not liking Sundays at work. She said that they were always slammed when people got out of church and they came in droves, were rude, and were lousy tippers. Oh My. And then I remembered what it was like to work the Sunday lunch shift at Red Robin in Santa Ana, CA. Terrible. The church people were horrible tippers. What was really weird was that I was also a church person. But I certainly wouldn't associate myself with "those" church people. Anyway, after our waitress left with our drink order, we all looked at each other in sadness. We had just spent a weekend reflecting on living missionally and I know each of us was wondering how we could minister to our waitress. We were all extra kind and extra grateful during that meal. And when our separate checks came, we all tipped extra and wrote encouraging notes on our little pieces of paper. I hope she was blessed. I hope it made up for the other church people.
Sometimes, when I'm having a stressful day or am just plain exhausted, I'm rude. I have a short fuse and let it rip on people who don't deserve it. My life has been radically impacted by Jesus Christ's saving grace but sometimes I forget. What a good reminder that I am in great need of forgiveness. I am forgiven. I am redeemed. I am made new. Anyone else needs a good dose of forgiveness?