Every now and then something comes our way that is just too good not to share. This story comes from Cindy Miller’s sister Jill Quick, and her husband Gary. I think of it as “The Powdered Sugar Donut Incident,” but they call it A Story About Powdered Sugar Donuts.
Several years ago, my wife and I were part of a coffee ministry at our church. We had two services on Sunday, 9:00am and 10:30. One Sunday a month we arrived at church early to prepare the coffee table with large carafes of coffee, hot water for tea and cocoa, and most importantly donuts holes; chocolate, glazed and powdered sugar. The coffee table was the center of attention prior to each of the services as folks of all ages stopped by for a beverage and a donut.
One Sunday morning, between services, we were visited by a frequent guest to the coffee table, a 5-year-old boy named Colton. Colton was a member of a family with 6 kids whom where long time members. Everyone knew the family and all the kids. Colton always filled a Styrofoam coffee cup with donuts and then off he would go. This Sunday, Colton stopped by the coffee table and asked my wife, “Where are the powdered sugar donuts?” This Sunday we were out of the powdered sugar donuts holes, but had chocolate and glazed. My wife told Colton that we didn’t have any powdered sugar donuts today, but there were plenty of others to choose from. The situation didn’t sit well with Colton, as he got that “pouty” face that most 5-year-old are famous for when they don’t get their way. After hearing the bad news about the donuts, Colton was off.
The Coffee table is set up right outside the church offices. Soon after Colton had left, the Senior Pastor came out of his office to tell the story of his recent discussion with Colton. You see the Senior Pastor was a favorite of the small children, as he kept a large jar of jelly beans in his office and the kids would visit him from time to time, in his office, to get a jelly bean. So it wasn’t unusual when Colton appeared in the Senior Pastor’s doorway that morning. The Pastor assumed Colton was looking for jelly beans. But today was different. Pastor greeted Colton, “Good morning Colton, are you here for some jelly beans?” Colton, with a look of disgust on his face, and putting his hands on his hips, told the Pastor, “There are no powdered sugar donuts today!” Pastor was a little taken a back, and responded, “Well, I’m sure there are others you can have”. Well, this didn’t satisfy Colton. He wanted the Pastor to go, then, and get him some powdered sugar donuts.
As the Pastor related this story to my wife and I, we all kind of laughed it off and went about our tasks, ours to continue to keep the coffee flowing and the Pastor was on to the platform to start the second service.
I began to contemplate the situation and began to ask myself. What is my “Powered Sugar Donut”? Is there something about the church, or that the church does, that upsets me enough to step into the Pastor office and demand he fix the problem immediately, regardless of his priorities? And if I have something that bothers me that much, such as the music, length of sermon, people in the choir, people on the board, money spent on fixing the church, etc. etc., is it really just as important as the lack of Powdered Sugar Donuts at the coffee table? I think all church members, at times, have their pet peeve with the church. Some will voice those grievances with the Pastor directly, or indirectly through an email or board member. But I would submit that the vast majority of the grievances folks have with the church are as important as the lack of Powdered Sugar Donuts.
I would ask each member when they encounter an issue they have with the church to ask themselves, is this my Powdered Sugar Donut, or is it a real issue? Because, the church has time to fix real issues, if it isn’t off at the store buying more Powdered Sugar donuts.
I can only say: Amen, Brother and Sister Quick!
And the Apostle Paul said:
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. – 1 Corinthians 13:4–7
Amen, Brother Paul!
Now let’s go find some powdered sugar donuts.
Soli Deo Gloria!
P.S. – I don’t have jelly beans in my study for the kids. I have M&Ms!