I have told this story verbally many times, but I had an occasion this week to tell it to a pastor who so enjoyed it I figured I would share it here.
Six years a go we were raising funds to go do the media missions work in Spain that we do. It was (and is) a slow process in our system of visiting various churches and sharing the vision we have to touch people with God's love.
Part of this process is calling various pastors and asking them to schedule a visit. The system we are under feels like we need to do 10 meetings a month like this (either with the pastor individually or the whole church). As a missionary phone solicitor, It's tricky to fill the schedule. Plus you have to try to meet new pastors and people all the time because you never know who is going to be the key person in a budget or a project.
We had a service scheduled further afield in Missouri last time and I called and called every church between that place and back home in KC. I got a hold of a pastor in a tiny town. He really discouraged me from coming.
"We are really small and it wouldn't really be worth your while. There's only a few of us older folks on a Sunday night."
"That's okay," I said confidently, "We're driving through on our way home anyway, so it would be a good opportunity to stop and share."
So a couple months later we show up in this town (name withheld) and set up our projector for showing our videos and a table with an assortment of printed materials.
The pastor had indeed predicted correctly. There were six people including the pastor all sporting white hair and a couple of canes. That's okay who knows who will catch the vision for what we do?
The routine was and is that Kerry speaks and shares some videos and then I get up and wrap things up with our testimony. Our total "program" is around 30 minutes usually give or take 5 minutes.
With only seven people in the seats, it was easy to make eye contact with everyone. After I'd been speaking a bit, I realized that everyone was asleep. Except Kerry. Even the little lady at the sound board. All asleep.
I was so stunned that I paused in my speaking. I looked at Kerry who didn't know that they were all asleep. I considered just saying Amen really loud and sitting down. I was contemplating what to do next when my awkward pause awoke the pastor. I decided to finish up with the short version of the talk.