Simple and Spectacular

Pastor Joel and his wife, Karen, who are both Standing Stone Shepherds.

Special Edition: Pastor Appreciation Month

What does it look like to appreciate your pastor? Here’s a story straight from Pastor Joel and his wife, Karen, who now serve as Standing Stone shepherds…

Karen and I planted a church with 60 teenagers and about 15 adults. In her 80s, Bea stood out in that raucous crowd. I asked her if she was comfortable with the loud music and chaos each week. She replied, “Are you kidding? I don’t want to sit in church with a bunch of blue-haired old ladies. These kids love Jesus, and I love them. I’m staying put!”

“Yes Ma’am,” I responded. (The only correct response to Bea).

One Sunday Bea approached Karen and I with “an offer we couldn’t refuse.” After asking what night we had free that week, she said,

“OK, here’s the deal. I won’t take ‘No’ for an answer, Pastor. You and Karen are going to have a date night. You are to come to my house by 6. Don’t bring anything—just yourselves. I’m going to feed you and then you are going to sit by the fireplace and talk—just the two of you—for a couple of hours. No excuses now; just be there!”

Wisely, I replied, “Yes Ma’am.”

That next Tuesday, we had a wonderful meal at Bea’s. She would not let us come into the kitchen to help. She served us cheese, wine, and crackers by the fire and made sure we had time to talk, just the two of us. She then informed us that this would be a monthly event and that resistance was futile. We loved these nights and felt blessed.

Bea passed away a few years ago. While we told her many times, I’m not sure she ever understood how powerful and important her simple gesture of hospitality meant to us, to our family, and to our church.

Simple doesn’t mean small impact. In God’s hands, a simple gesture for your pastor is spectacular.
Remember Bea.
Then go and do likewise.


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