Serving on staff at a local church calls for a calendar assessment at it’s basic level: Christmas, Easter, Mother’s Day, Summer Vacation Bible School. What about the rest of the year?

Ministry takes place every day of the week. Ask any Church Secretary or Admin and you’ll be told what happens on Monday, Tuesday, etc through Friday. This is why we must be ready for “company” all the time and not just on the big 4 holidays.

I am a big fan of parking lot greeters. Folks who come early, armed with a smile and a peppermint, who chit chat other folks all the way to the door. HandsWaveThey toss up their heads in acknowledgement. They wave.  They talk about the weather. They can say “Good Morning” with such a lilt in their voice that you’d think they were singing. And you know they mean it when they say, “It is SO good to see you today!”

This is the easiest and best way to meet new people, work on your handshake, and get “face-time” with everyone from the widows to the little people. This is not a time for long discussions, just a kind and gracious Christian greeting. This is not for huggers, but for wavers and shakers.

I recall a sermon during my children’s teen years of the importance of greeting at home. The first 3 seconds can change your home into a sanctuary by a loving, kind, and enthusiastic greeting. In this simple 3 seconds, whether they are coming or going, I can express to someone how important he/she is to me. Now that my kids are young adults, an enthusiastic “HEY!”; a humorous, “Friend or Foe?”; a kiss on a Mama’s cheek when #1 Son comes home or leaves; all these are life skills that express value and love.

kidsSmilingWe’ll be practicing this life skill of greeting this summer with our youth and little people during Summer HEAT (Helping Everyone All Together). We’ll finish Sunday School 10 minutes early to cover the front lawn and parking lot. We’ll teach our young people how to start a conversation, shake a hand, continue a conversation, and show in their faces the joy and skill of a Christian greeting.

“When I smiled at them, they scarcely believed it; the light of my face was precious to them.” Job 29:24