To me, his treasures are just piles of rusty metal.
To him, they’re opportunities.
The men and their wives (often including me and the kids) would go to swap meets to buy and sell and talk and ride. (Well, I’d go to read by day and keep him company by night.)
His dad and the family friend aren’t as active in the collecting anymore. But Jeff still is. He’s bought up truckloads of parts and sold just as many.
He calls it his hobby.
I call it his ministry.
Because when he drives in to a meet with his truck and trailer piled high like the Beverly Hillbillies, the old men swarm around. Like bees on an open coke can, they can’t wait to get in.
And as they help him unload, they talk and dicker and swap stories. Jeff, too.
But Jeff being the youngest by a couple of decades, he listens the most. He asks questions. He smiles and marvels and pays attention to the old tales.
He thinks he’s just doing business. But I know he’s making friends. Collecting them.
These elderly gentlemen are more than relics of rusty bodies to him. Each one is a treasure full of interesting histories to share and life yet to be lived. A friend to be made.
This weekend Jeff’s opportunities are in Perry, Georgia, at the Cushman Club of America’s National Meet (I bet you didn’t know it was this weekend!).
As we drove into Perry on Friday, I asked Jeff how it felt to know his arrival would be so anticipated, to know that what he had was what they wanted?
With no hesitation, he answered by asking how I feel when he sees me every afternoon as he comes in from work. He’s always excited to arrive home to see me because I have what he needs, I am what he wants. Touché, my sweet husband.
What I see as a tired, frumpy, middle-aged woman, he sees as his treasure. I’m not just his cook and cleaner, I’m the woman he delights in loving. The one he ministers to.
Whatever we do, if we do it with a purpose beyond the obvious, deeper than the world does it, with more meaning because we belong to Christ, we sanctify it as ministry. A calling that not only brings joy to the recipient, but glory to the Father.
It’s Saturday afternoon in Perry and the rain is starting to fall. It’s not good for selling Cushman parts. But it’s good for sitting together under awnings.
Talking . . .
Listening . . .
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What hobby is also your ministry?