Before Easter Sunday is upon us again, our little congregation will be without a pastoral family. It's only been a couple of weeks since the announcement was made that our Pastor and his family were answering God's call to move on after leading and loving us for nearly eight years.
It's been hard to accept, but we have confidence that the best days are ahead for our congregation as in a few weeks, we wait to see who God has called to lead us next.
One of the things we've been faced with as a church board is how many things Pastor and Bettina have just done over the years. Without question, Bettina spends hours in the kitchen helping prepare and serve food and even spearheaded the cleanup on several occasions. And who but Pastor knows whether the heat in the sanctuary needs turned down before the building gets locked every Sunday and there are countless hours that he himself has spent cleaning the bathrooms in the church building or cutting the grass. All things that we as a congregation need to see to on a regular basis in their absence.
It's been said that five percent of the people do ninety-five percent of the work in a lot of churches and that's certainly true here. And we're really spread out as a congregation too, as several families drive a half hour or more every week to get to services; so there's challenge in that also. But yesterday after the boys in my Sunday School class and I finished watching a Veggie Tales DVD while eating food prepared by several hands, I wandered into the kitchen and noticed that the sinks were full of dirty dishes. And I took it upon myself to get fresh hot, soapy water in the sink and start washing. I got help that I didn't require or expect in a friend who offered to dry dishes and put them away and several others brought dishes into the kitchen, wiped and put away tables and even accomplished the vacuuming.
Neither our Pastor or his wife had to lift a finger and all was accomplished. And that's the way it should be. And I think working together to accomplish a nice farewell dinner for our pastoral family showed them just a little glimpse of how much we appreciate all they've done for us.