Today I went and visited a beautiful baby boy named Noe and his very tired momma, Gladia. Noe was born around 2 am this morning and is an 8 lb. boy with a full head of hair and 2 teeth already! Gladia called me around 11:30 a.m. to share the happy news with me.
So why am I blogging about this? Well, I barely know this family. You see I am kind of a Chipotle addict. I am even a member of the invitation-only Farm Team (google it!) Anyway, wherever I go I talk to people. If I am a regular somewhere I remember people's stories and ask them about events from their lives. As a result people can sense that I see them as more than an employee in a service industry. They can sense when value is being added to them in a genuine way. So at Chipotle I have gotten to know a few of the employees as well as the General Manager. There are two sweet ladies there that always shout out an "hola!" to me. Now my Spanish is pretty much limited to ordering my favorite foods and what not to put on it (lettuce, tomato, sour cream...yuk!) But I try to use this limited Spanish when they are there knowing they appreciate hearing their own language. (Always thought they were Mexicans, but just learn one is from Honduras and the other from El Salvador)
A few months ago when Gladia told me she was pregnant I asked in the process of a conversation if she knew the sex and name of the baby yet. She told me about her boy named Noe (No-ee), and I told her I was going to start praying for her and for Noe. She gave me a hug and told me she loved me. ...I was caught totally off guard and uttered an awkward, "love you too" while wondering what my wife would think of this story. A few weeks later while strapping on the Chipotle feed bag and reading my book, Gladia walked up and handing an invitation to her upcoming baby shower. Now, I hate those things. They are usually way girly and I the very few that I have been to, I have wanted to be anywhere but there. But I knew I would be going. I got to meet her husband and family as well as a lot of friends and family as well as other Chipotle employees outside of the restaurant setting.
So what is the "why" behind all this? Very simple. As a Christian we are called to be salt and light...everywhere. In the workplace, in the marketplace and even in Chipotle. We are to be not only pointing people to Jesus, but also bringing the Kingdom of God with us and establishing it wherever we are. We are to be agents of the Kingdom of God. It is the way that the Church has spread across the globe for 2000 years.
So today I got to pray with Claudia and pray the Lord's blessing on Noe's young life. How did this opportunity come about? By loving people, by being available. It's not as hard as people make it out to be and you just might get to eat some yummy food along the way.