Three Thoughts from the Parking Lot Pastor

Imagine that you and I met recently, and had a great first impression. This may have been at the grocery store, a work connection, or a school sporting event where we connected well and even our spouses interacted in a friendly manner. I

Imagine that I invite you over for dinner, and because of this first meeting and it's positive feelings, you enthusiastically say yes! We agree on a time and you plan to bring the entire family over one night next week. The night comes, and you leave your home excited for a nice evening with new friends. For the sake of illustration, this is where things begin to go wrong... 

First, the address I gave and you put in your GPS puts you on the wrong side of the Thruway, with no ability to exit. When you do arrive 15 minutes late, the porch lights are off and the driveway is full, leaving you still unsure if this is the right location. 

When you ring the bell, I take a long time to answer it, and when I finally come to the door, my greeting is halfhearted at best. Next, it is clear that dinner was started without you, which is ok given your tardiness, but the general disarray of the home makes you unsure if I was expecting you to make it for dinner at all? Dinner conversation is strained, as it appears I am more interested in telling you about myself than I am in learning anything about you.

Sound pretty bad? Yeah, I think so too. Hopefully you have not ever experienced a dinner invitation like this fictional scenario I set up. Sadly however, this isn't too far fetched for what a family can experience when they decide to visit a new church this weekend.

I spent this week as a parking lot greeter for our church's VBS program. I had a great time interacting with many of you, your wonderful kids, and your numerous comments about "finally seeing the Pastor do something around here!" :-)

Being out there, and interacting with people was a great reminder of 3 things that most people forget about a parking lot whether it be at a church, at a soccer tournament, or at a elementary school function. 

1. People decide in the parking lot. 
2. People care when you care. 
3. People love to be loved!

This weekend, how can you be intentional about being kind and hospitable with others from the moment they drive on to the church campus? I don't mean everyone has to put on a reflective vest and carry an umbrella. I do mean however, that if we are not conscious about positive human to human interaction in those first moments, the rest of our time together is hard to recover.

Are parking lots the most important facet of our ministries? Absolutely not. Not even close. But they can be used of God toward making an eternal difference. 

I am a difference maker.

Pastor Milo


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