Serving on the Front Lines: Jeff’s Story
Mar 06, 2019
| By John Choquette
As a member of the Summit’s parking team, Jeff is used to being in the background. For almost 25 years, he’s served faithfully, greeting each guest with a smile as he directs traffic every Sunday.
But over time, his job has changed. As the church has grown, he’s been on the front lines, serving a congregation with an ever-increasing need for space. This has been both a blessing and a challenge. It’s one that Jeff embraces, knowing that God will give him the right tools when he needs them.
“We know from God's Word that we have been blessed with different spiritual gifts that he intends us to use for his purposes,” Jeff said. “In my profession as a hazardous chemicals scientist, and as an active member of a local creation science organization, I've always enjoyed working behind the scenes to solve puzzling problems. I experience great joy when the solutions to those puzzles benefit society.”
Jeff knows that he was uniquely made to serve in this way. “This talent and joy is not just a random personality trait. It’s aspiritual gift from God that, according to his Word, I am bound to make use of.”
He points to 1 Peter 14:10–11 as confirmation of this:
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. (NIV)
Even though he doesn’t always receive a lot of recognition, Jeff knows that he’s making a difference. “The greatest encouragement comes from guests and members that show their appreciation through friendly, in-person words of thanks,” he said. “Over more than two decades on the parking team, there have been many, many moments and relationships that have affirmed my desire to serve”—especially relationships within his team.
“The willingness of team members to step up and take on any role necessary when we are short-handed has been both amazing and encouraging,” Jeff said. “Team members have often gone above and beyond, from buying new communication equipment, hand warmers and coffee for the team, to bringing in their own drone to help with traffic oversight.”
Sometimes, it’s easy to forget all of the people and planning that go into a Saturday night or Sunday morning. When everyone embraces their role, it’s seamless. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. But it’s often the little things that make the biggest difference. As the Summit continues to grow, so does the impact that Jeff makes. “The parking team is a perfect ministry for those who feel that their spiritual gifts include acts of service and/or hospitality,” he said. “We are truly a team that cares about one another and does our job of parking and greeting guests as best we can.”