Monday, November 10, 2014

No Leftovers

Today I’d like to tell you a little bit about my friend Steve. Steve loves to cook. I mean, he LOVES to cook! And he’s pretty great at it. If there is an opportunity to put something tasty together, especially for a large group, Steve is all over it. I enjoy cooking from time to time, but honestly, the thought of just preparing a meal for my wife and kids is often overwhelming enough… Fortunately, that’s not the case for Steve.

Last week, a certain family pastor that shall go unnamed, forgot he had scheduled to host a dinner for a local football team. It had been planned for months and it was on my, I mean, this guy’s calendar, but I…or rather, he just forgot to finalize the details. So with only 48 hours until the event, guess who got the call? Yep, it was Steve. And while most would have been insulted to be asked to take on such a huge task on short notice, Steve replied with, “I’d love to!”

Steve with his beautiful wife Elain
So Steve spent most of his Thursday in our church kitchen, just cooking away. Later that evening he served an amazing pasta meal to a group of over 70 players and coaches – guys that he didn’t even know. He hung around and cleaned up and then headed home. Who does that?! It doesn’t sound fun to me at all, but Steve gets a thrill out of it. Of course, if I were as talented with the spatula and ladle, perhaps I’d don the apron a little more often. And truly it is a talent. Anyone that has joined us at one of our summer youth camps knows that Steve gets great pleasure in sharing his giftedness, almost as much happiness as those who have the opportunity to enjoy his food.

Steve & his daughter Callie @ the Barnyard Bash
Here’s the deal, preparing meals is more than a hobby for Steve; it’s his ministry. Have you heard the old saying:“The way to one’s heart, is often through their stomach.”? That seems to be his motto. Over the years I’ve seen this gentleman bless others simply by using his special interest and skill-set. How awesome to see someone like Steve, acknowledging his gifts and not withholding them, but realizing he has been blessed to be a blessing! Hooray for him and hooray for anyone allowed to dine at his table…but what about you? Are you sharing your unique giftedness? Do you recognize the specific ways the Lord has created you? Have you identified the ways that you’ve been called to love your family, friends, community, and church?

Some pastors have been called to feed the sheep, while some like Steve have been called to literally feed the sheep. Both play a vital role in the kingdom. However, those are not the only parts to play. What might your calling be? What skills and resources should you be gladly giving? Have you asked for help in deciphering your particular role? And if you’re aware of it, but simply not sharing…why? Our gifts are like a great meal; they should be shared with others, leaving no leftovers.

Matt Fowler - NBC Family Pastor of HS

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