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Friday, May 16, 2008

The Pepsi Lady


One of my best friends, Leslie, is known at a local yogurt drive-through as “The Pepsi Lady.”

Years ago, Leslie took advantage of the store’s offer that if customers bought one of their large tumblers, they could bring that cup in for a very cheap refill for a limited time. To a fountain Pepsi lover like Leslie, this was a sweet deal! So every day, Leslie pulled up to the window to get her giant refill.

Because of her huge smile and sociability, Leslie became a popular customer who was greeted with not one but several employee “hello's” whenever she appeared. To say that Leslie found favor at this place is an understatement. In fact, when the time limit ran out on the refill offer, Leslie was given special dispensation and was able to continue her daily fountain Pepsi quests at the discounted rate!

Soon, Leslie became known as “The Pepsi Lady” at the yogurt shop, and relationships with the college students who were employed there started to develop.

On a regular basis, Leslie would ask the employees how they were doing at school, and they would fill her in on the latest challenge or triumph. She would celebrate with them or offer to pray for them.

The thing about Leslie is, after the students would share anecdotes or details about their lives, she would remember to ask about those specific situations the next time she saw those students. Her sincere interest demonstrated to them that they were more than just fast-food serving robots to her.

Sometimes, when there were no customers behind her leaving more time to visit, employees shared in greater depth about their lives, and at least one specifically asked Leslie to pray for her, which Leslie felt privileged to do.

Therefore, Leslie has been able to encourage these college kids, speak life into their days, console them, rejoice with them, pray with them, counsel them and make a huge check mark on the positive side of their mental “positive/negative checklist” that so many seekers tally as they interact with Christians.

When I think of The Pepsi Lady, I think,
“Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!' ” (Matthew 25:21 NIV).

Points to ponder:

1. Is there any regular habit or moment of interaction with others in your life in which you could minister to others in a simple Pepsi-Lady way?
2. When in public, do you care about the people behind the counter or register, or just see them as worker who are there to serve you?
3. When a nonbeliever interacts with you, do you create a positive, negative or neutral check mark on the “Would I want to be one of those Christians?” mental checklist?




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14 Comments:

Blogger Denise said...

This was nice, thanks for sharing.

May 16, 2008 at 5:36 AM  
Anonymous beverlydru said...

This makes me think of builderman's Pepsi ministry. In the summer, he always has cold drinks in a cooler. He looks for people to give them to. The flag holder on road construction, a guy riding his bicycle down the road...the list is varied and the response is always amazement. Some would call it "random acts of kindness." I call it ministry. "I was thirsty and you gave me a drink." Love in action - it can be so simple.

May 16, 2008 at 7:32 AM  
Blogger Mocha with Linda said...

Loved this. How often I overlook the little seemingly inconsequential interactions where I could make a difference in someone's day.

Thanks for the great reminder.

May 16, 2008 at 7:54 AM  
Blogger Cyndy said...

Wow, she is an inspiration! I think we so often forget it's the little things in life that show who we really are.

May 16, 2008 at 9:06 AM  
Blogger Susanne said...

What a great story to encourage us to remember to care about all people and how God can use a seemingly inconsequential thing to minister to people!

May 16, 2008 at 9:16 AM  
Blogger Amy B said...

Linda,

I have to be honest... I read your post weeks ago in "drafts." I have since asked God to show me ways to minister to those I encounter each day. It is amazing the opportunities that we have and all we have to do is look for them.

Beautiful post, my friend. Awesome!

May 16, 2008 at 9:28 AM  
Blogger Heather@Mommymonk said...

Ha ha - I read this post EARLY because the title caught my eye. Then, I saw Amy's comment. Such a great lesson! I love the cool picture too.

May 16, 2008 at 10:07 AM  
Blogger Melanie said...

First, Praise God for Leslie!

I do find myself talking to the people behind the counter. If a customer ahead of me is rude, I try to be especially grateful to the cashier.

One morning the Stabucks drive-thru employee noticed my "Jesus Loves You" poster in my back seat and commented. (I had bought it for Sunday School.) So glad I was being Christ-like that day. What a terrible witness I would have been if I had been rude to the employee.

May 16, 2008 at 11:20 AM  
Blogger Michelle@Life with Three said...

Such a good reminder. It's so easy to get caught up in the rush of daily life and focusing on meeting our needs and the needs of our immediate family, that we forget the people "behind the counter" have feelings and needs, as well. This post reminded me to broaden my perspective. Thank you!

May 16, 2008 at 1:44 PM  
Blogger SJ said...

What a great example of not just hearing the word, but "doing" it. So many times I just rush through and dont take the time to hardly speak to anyone. Such a simple thing we all can do. Just listen to people and care.

May 16, 2008 at 3:55 PM  
Blogger windycindy said...

I hope I am useful in the same way to somebody. Cindi

May 16, 2008 at 3:56 PM  
Blogger Becoming Me said...

What a wonderful example your Pepsi lady is!

May 16, 2008 at 8:26 PM  
OpenID darnelle said...

So many times we think that only the people on the official "mission fields" are missionaries. Oh but you are so right - all we need to do is open our eyes. Our day to day lives are full of people whom Jesus died for and who are so thirsty for words of affirmation and hope.
The Pepsi Lad is shining light in darkness. I like the Pepsi Lady.

May 16, 2008 at 10:22 PM  
OpenID darnelle said...

Um, that should read:
"The Pepsi Lady is shining light in the darkness" . . . not the Pepsi Lad. The Pepsi Lad is a whole different person :)

May 16, 2008 at 10:25 PM  

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