Food was served in my honor Sunday in the congregational fellowship hall. People were impressed by the spread of culinary delights, prepared and served with great care, so much so that one person said, "You should leave and come back again, so that we can eat like this one more time."
I am always encouraged by a congregation that practices hospitality. It may seem like a no-brainer to welcome a new pastor, but I am thankful that someone is thinking of me in a positive way that results in the investment of their time through food preparation. Food is connected to love on so many occasions. Another family was preparing an apple cake and shared with me that it inspired their young daughter to eat apples, which she now calls, "Pastor Joe Apples." How 'bout them apples? Thank you all for the hospitality.
A few others said, "we should eat like this every Sunday." What a wonderful thought. That spread of food raised the level of conversation. I don't think there were necessarily more people present Sunday, but the conversation and fellowship were elevated. For this I am also thankful.