Little Things Matter
January 25, 2018
Last Thursday night, I found myself doing something I was woefully unprepared and unqualified to do. I had to make 30 2-sided copies of three pages…and do it fast! Let me explain.
For the first time we offered one of our men’s discipleship environments at night. Man Zone has gone multi-site! Peter Moore is our volunteer host for our Thursday night Man Zone session, and he and I were a bit overwhelmed when we saw the number of men who showed up…which is a wonderful problem to have. By the way, most of the men who came had never been to one of our men’s groups. Ever. That is a huge next step that so many of those guys took!
So, what led to my ineptness in the copy room was the fact that we ran out of outlines for this bumper crop of men. Compounding that problem was the fact we have new copiers, and I clearly missed the orientation (or degree?) that it takes to operate them. After greeting the guys, I rushed over to the office to make the copies needed only to find that the one copier I know a little about was in the middle of a print project for some sort of manual that contained an enormous amount of pages. Not knowing how to interrupt it, I turned to the less familiar, more intimidating machine and started pushing buttons. If only our administrative assistants could have seen me! It was quite comical. Thankfully, Pastor Dustin Aagaard came over to see if he could help me. (I think Peter really sent him over to check on me.)
Dustin and I got the pages copied and stapled and (finally) delivered. Peter breathed a sigh of relief, and I went home reminded again of how big of a difference little things make. The things we often overlook and take for granted are the things that elevate an event or gathering from good to really good. While those of us who are more accustomed to presenting the material can receive an inordinate amount of attention, I learned a long time ago that if the guy (or gal) who runs the sound, video, or lights wasn’t there, people wouldn’t be able to see me or hear me. Many are needed; each doing their part; each making a difference; each helping achieve the goal.
After NASA Apollo 11’s incredible feat of putting three men on the moon in July of 1969, astronaut Michael Collins said, “All this is possible only through the blood, sweat, and tears of thousands of people… All you see are the three of us, but underneath the surface are thousands and thousands of others.” According to author Catherine Thimmesh, there were about 400,000 others who helped with the Apollo 11 mission.
In her book, Team Moon, Thimmesh shares stories of these hidden heroes–spacesuit seamstresses, radio telescope operators, parachute designers and others who made it possible to get men to the moon, get them home, and let the rest of the world watch while it happened. At Kennedy Space Center, some 17,000 engineers, mechanics, soldiers, contractors and other workers set up the enormous missile for the launch. Then there were the “Two Bobs”–the guys in Houston monitoring just how little fuel was left in the lunar module during its descent to the surface. Team Moon also included a 24-year-old “computer whiz kid Jack Garman” who helped work through worrisome computer glitches during the Eagle’s landing. The computer code that ran all the systems was developed by a team of software engineers at MIT led by Margaret Hamilton–last year’s film release titled “Hidden Figures” was based on their under-reported story. Roughly 500 people worked on the space suit, including one seamstress who commented, “We didn’t worry too much until the guys on the moon started jumping up and down. And that gave us a little bit of an eyebrow twitch.”
No wonder astronaut Neil Armstrong would later say that as he took his first step on the moon he immediately thought about all those 400,000 people who had given him the opportunity to literally make that step. In the same way, it takes a lot of people, most of whom are behind the scenes, to help someone take a step to follow Jesus…and that’s the beauty of the Body.
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. (1 Corinthians 12:4-6)
This weekend, you will have the opportunity to spend some time checking out the first Serving Expo of 2018 at both of our Journey campuses. There are many ways to serve at and through Journey. Serving is one of the primary ways that God grows our faith, and we will talk about how important Personal Ministry is in building your trust and confidence in God.
Plan to join us this weekend and spend a few extra minutes exploring the expo and taking a step toward serving.