Sunday is Game Day and each church has it’s own traditions and routines. These are just some of the questions I pulled into the parking lot hoping to get answers for my first Sunday:
– Which door does everyone come in?
– Where does the staff park?
– Who unlocks all the hundreds of doors?
– Does the staff “talk business” on Sundays?
– Is there Goldfish already in the cabinet?
– Does the building have wireless?
– Where can I find a plastic fork? (I brought my lunch, not knowing all the particulars that follow the last worship service.)

The morning the worship leader is the most busy . . . he knocked on my office door and offered to get me coffee before the first service AND stopped praise band practice between services to introduce me to everyone. What a wonderful expression of kindness.

I also needed to ask the youth leader if I could use his space on Easter Sunday morning. He graciously said “sure,” before he even knew what it was for. What a wonderful expression of cooperation.

I met smiling children who were polite, engaging, and attentive during Sunday school and Children’s Church.  Real children with real hearts, real hands, and real handshakes.

I met precious nursery servants who were on the floor playing and talking with the babies, who shared smiles and conversation.

And there were 2 long-time members who came and introduced themselves to Bob & I individually. They each shook our hands, they each asked us questions about ourselves, and we all shared our first laughs. And that was before we were even introduced. When the pastor did introduce us, the folks in both services applauded. What a lovely welcome.

I not only felt welcomed, I felt wanted and prepared for. The office had been organized and little notes of information were placed on the couple of stacks of resources. On the desk were the 5 most important files: Children’s Rosters w/contact info, Volunteer Schedule through April, Budget, Children’s Council job descriptions, and bulletins for the last 2 months.

I’m grabbing the last pictorial directory this afternoon and writing info around all the new faces we worshipped with today.

For the ones who came before me, thank you . . . surely goodness and mercy have followed you.