You may be wondering, why would a preacher use a blog to talk about Glenda’s, a local restaurant in our town? It was almost iconic in area, especially for breakfast. Everyone loved it, but what does it have to do with church life or our life as a Christian? There is a link that impacts both.
This past weekend I joined half of White County to get my last Glenda’s biscuits as Sunday was their last day being open. The parking lot was packed both Saturday and Sunday and the drive – thru looked like Spaghetti Junction on a Friday afternoon rush hour. I was also amazed at the pictures from social media as people shared about what Glenda’s meant to them.
What was it about this place that would mean so much to our community? I think the answer and the link to church life and our life as Christians is in that word, community. Yes, the biscuits were great, but it was more; it was a place to enjoy community. Christians and churches, we must live with this mindset, the need for community in how we gather and how we live.
A place where we love and serve others in the name of Jesus. A place where people know they are not just a number but know they are loved and appreciated. A place of connection. That was Glenda’s, in the words of the Cheer’s song, where everybody knew your name.
In fact, Saturday morning when I went through the drive thru and placed my order they said, “thank you Michael.” By the way, she didn’t ask for it before I placed my order, she just knew. But that is true of the whole Glenda’s experience.
It was place where if you went between before 7:00 AM you would be greeted by Rodney Nix and the men of the early breakfast table with a “hello preacher.” It was a place where Calvin Adams would call me out when I walked in to pick up an order for the school or the church.
It was place where pastors like Gary Hefner and Doug Merck and many others didn’t just eat breakfast but also took time to listen and pray for folks everyday that had needs.
It was a place where families gathered to celebrate ballgames, birthdays, and anniversaries. It was place where kids ate before school or when they decided to “miss” first block and eat with their friends to catch up on the weekend.
It was the place where I had the blessing of sitting down with my daughter and having lunch with her every week for her first year of college.
It was the place where every Wednesday morning for 5 years I would call at 5:35 AM and place an order for forty sausage biscuits for my Biscuit and Bibles study with the football team and they would have them ready right at 6:30 with a smile and a hello and Glenda’s boy would come out and say, “thank you preacher.”
It was the first place I drove to after being home from the hospital with Covid and I was blown away when Mark came to the drive through window and said, “we have sure been praying for you preacher, so good to see you out and about.”
My stories are the stories of every person who came to Glenda's. Everyone had these moments and memories because Glenda’s was more than a restaurant, it was a place of community.
Something that every church and every Christian must seek to live out.
May we all strive to make sure it continues.
Glenda’s may have closed, and we will all miss it.
But our community remains, and I for one, am very thankful to be a part of this special place.