Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Free lunch . . . oops!

Each Monday morning at 11:00, I meet in my office with Bryan Nelson (who is our Worship Arts Director here at Grace Church) and Andy Brightbill (who is our Pastor of Student Ministries). The purpose of this weekly meeting is to critique the previous Sunday morning’s services and to be sure that we are all set in our planning for the upcoming Sunday. It is amazing how Sundays roll around with such regularity.

Typically, after our meeting the three of us go catch some lunch together. Over time, we have become regular “Monday lunch customers” at the Two Cousins restaurant in Manheim. We have actually gotten to know the workers there quite well and always have a good time with them. Our status at this restaurant has increased over the months we have been going there. We have gone from having to pay a quarter for a refill of soda to getting free refills on soda. In fact, now they just say, “Hey, you guys are like family round here…get your own refill.”

We have become such staples at this restaurant on Monday afternoons that we no longer even pay for our food when we order like you are supposed to. They just take our order and we go sit down and when our lunch is done (which sometimes can take us awhile) we go up to the counter and pay before we leave.

That brings me to a recent Monday lunch at Two Cousins. After a lengthy lunch of laughing and eating, we realized that we needed to get back to the office before everyone there began to wonder if the rapture had occurred and they had all been left behind. So we got up and headed for the doors. We said good-bye to the workers behind the counter, smiled, waved and said, “See ya next week!” We realized that they looked at us kind of funny but we didn’t think anything of it. We then drove back to the church.

A few minutes later I was sitting in front of my computer and pulled out my wallet to check to see how much cash I had since my daughter had an away soccer game that night and we would probably stop to grab a burger afterwards. That’s when it hit me! We never paid for our lunch!! No wonder they looked at us kind of funny!! Two pastors and a church music guy from Lititz just ripped them off!!

I ran over to Bryan’s office where Andy was heading with the sudden revelation as well. Bryan gave us $20 to pay for his lunch and Andy and I hopped in the car and headed back to Manheim to make things right. The owner just laughed. He said, “You guys didn’t have to come all the way back…we know you. You could have just paid next Monday!” Now personally, I think they should do one of those “buy 10 lunches get 1 free” deals. By now, we should have earned about a months worth of free meals!

To celebrate our genuine confession and repentance and the fact that we are such honest and trustworthy individuals, Andy and I took the change from the $20 Bryan gave us to pay his bill and we went down to Grecos and got ice cream for the two of us!

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