Thursday, April 3, 2008


A couple of days ago my friend Tim celebrated eighteen years serving at the same church, Faith Assembly in N. Ft. Myers, FL. Tim was already on staff when Anne and I moved there for my very first full time pastoral position in 1992. We were there a little over two years, and we became good friends. You can tell by the picture that we were WAY ahead of our time. Totally cutting edge! (I think we were doing a drama about Sunday School, but I still wear the cap occasionally). We still keep in touch even though we rarely get to see each other in person. I have a lot of great memories of my time there. We were treated very well by the pastor, Phil Goss, and the church family. One cool thing is that 3 of the pastors, including Pastor Goss, are STILL THERE!! I think that says a lot about the character of the leaders there. Anyway, as I was thinking about my time there, I was reminded of a funny story that has a moral in the end...

Tim was/is a huge Atlanta Braves fan. He was always trying to figure out how to mix his love for the Braves with some type of viable ministry opportunity. One day, he decided to organize a church outing to Miami to watch the Braves play the Marlins. When I heard about the incredible ministry that was going to be happening, I asked Tim if he needed my assistance. (Doesn't every good bus trip need to include the Music Pastor? I thought so.) So I came along and we had a fun trip over to the park. By the time we arrived and got to our "great" seats (outfield of couse, Tim spared no expense), I was really hungry. Of course if you read this blog very often you know that it's against my personal values to buy overpriced stadium food, but there was no escaping it this time...I HAD to EAT!! To my surprise, they sold large pizza's for ten bucks! Not a bad stadium value, so I got one and started in. About half way through the pizza, I was feeling kind of full, but I could still eat some more. Now you have to remember that this was a long time ago when I was pretty skinny and could eat whatever I wanted and never had to think about it (oh, the I miss thee). That's when the guy behind me (a big guy, man's man, who was on the church board) asked, "You gonna eat that whole thing?! You can't eat that!" I said, "Oh yeah, I'm going to eat it, and I'm going to love it. Just watch!" He had set the hook, and I had taken the bait. I was in. By the time there were two pieces left, I was FULL. But there was NO WAY I was going to stop with just two pieces left. When I stuffed the last piece in my mouth, I turned around and showed him the empty box, and said "See, no problem!" I think he even acknowledged my greatness by saying, "You're crazy" or something like that. Either way, I had WON! No pizza's gonna get in my way...yada, yada. I then turned back around in my seat and my stomach started to churn almost immediately. That dough felt like it tripled in size when it hit my stomach. I sat through the last half of the game with the worst stomach ache in my life, but I couldn't let anyone see because that would cheapen my earlier win. It was kind of a miserable ride home, and I can't even remember if the Marlins or Braves won the game, but there is one thing I have remembered to this day...there are times when "winning" is JUST NOT WORTH IT!!

1 comment:

Tim McDaniel said...

Ah, those were the days. Thanks for the mention, though no where in my post do I use the word "celebrate". That board member is still here, too.

Go Braves!