Sometimes I have difficulty figuring out what happened on Mondays. I work lunch and dinner shifts at the restaurant, with about an hour and a half in between shifts, from 10am to 9-ish in the evening. And I usually don’t do anything interesting in the interim since I’m trying to take a break from being on my feet at the restaurant. So far, up until tonight, I’ve felt like there was a specific thing that happened every Monday that I could reflect on. But not tonight.
So, I could write about the first guy who ever found something wrong with his food since I started working at 2 Chez, other than 3 times that steaks weren’t cooked through enough for people’s liking. This guy found a fly. That NEVER happens. Honestly, its probably one of the cleanest kitchens on the planet (my boss is OCD, and he was cooking today at lunch). Nevertheless, without providing such evidence, this guy said there was a fly in his Chicken Florentine at lunch today. I went and told Todd, the owner, and he said give him his lunch for free. Todd said the fly must have dive-bombed the pan he was preparing the dish in and got lost in there. So, I gave it to him for free. This is usually not an exciting moment as a server, because the kitchen’s mistake is usually reflected in the tip. Not so with this guy. He gave me $5 (the dish is only $10) and said it was not my fault. He blessed me.
I could write about my co-worker, Jay, and how he said he wished he could just crawl into a hole tonight. He made a string of bad decisions last week and they have damaged his relationship with his wife. He’s hurting. He doesn’t know how to repair his relationship with his wife, and he doesn’t really understand how to take responsibility for his $1500 trading card purchase or the $250 he spent the following night on alcohol because his wife was upset about the $1500 worth of trading cards he purchased. He is broken. And I don’t know how to speak to his darkness. I listened to him, but I didn’t know how to help him. I am hoping that he was more in need of a listening ear than advice.
Or, I could write about the elderly couple that came in to the restaurant for the first time tonight to celebrate their 63rd Anniversary. He was using a walker but didn’t seem to be lacking in vigor while interacting with me. They were as excited as a couple of 20 year old newly-weds to be eating at such a nice restaurant, and they were going all out. All out for them was getting a couple glasses of wine, an appetizer, and the free dessert that we give to every person who is celebrating either an anniversary or birthday. I looked at them and wondered about how my wife and I will look and feel after 63 years of marriage. We will be 84 at that point, which is how old I assume these two were. Will we be full of life and love at 84? Will we be alive? Will we be as excited about a nice dinner as we were when we were 21?
I could also write about how I worked with one of my best friends tonight. I could write about how we talked about prayer and making decisions in our lives. I spent time last night with a bunch of Baptists my age and they all talk about their lives in terms of how they are “asking God” what to do next. And I believe them. But I don’t do that very often. My friend Zach said that he and his wife make decisions based upon what they think is right in light of what they perceive would be something that God wants them to do. They don’t pray about decisions. They make decisions, and trust that they are doing what God would want them to do. I told him I’m not sure which way, his way or the Baptist’s way, was better. I wondered about my life in relationship to the way God wants me to live and how I connect to His will. I don’t pray most of the time when it comes to decisions about what I’m doing with my life. I’m not sure that this is right, wrong, or nothing.
So, like I said, tonight I don’t know what to write about. This is what happened, and this is what I think I’ve learned today: Life is much more than we think it is. And when we don’t pay attention to it, it just happens around us and we don’t really experience it. I don’t know what will happen tomorrow, but I’m pretty sure that something will, and that in some small way, God will be doing something to reach out to me and teach me something. I’m looking.