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Chapter 42. The Old Restaurant Church

October 8, 2010

The Old Restaurant Church

Where The Apostolic Church is located now, was originally a restaurant. It had started out as The Western Sizzler Steak House. It stood on a small hill overlooking Historic Highway 66 on the edge of town. Its four lanes of highway were closely paralleled by another four-lane road scarcely 100 yards apart.

Even with all the heavy traffic under it’s nose the steakhouse struggled to survive and finally closed. It reopened eventually, as a Mexican restaurant. This new enterprise was not was not able to last very long either, and finally closed. The big sign overlooking the highway sadly announced the fact when the letters were removed. The restaurant sat empty for a time.

The church had been closer to town and was temporarily housed in a storefront, They dreamed of the day when they would have a place of their very own.  They gave sacrificially and saved. They had fundraisers. They prayed and the looked.

Last year the Lord made way for the empty restaurant to be purchased by the church and they worked hard to remodel their new facility.

Many work nights were needed to make the transition. The normal Thursday midweek service was often cancelled or temporarily changed to accommodate the workers schedules.

In January, the pastor called a three-day fast.  He also announced special prayer meetings for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Communion would be served on Wednesday. This service was just for the church family. No visitors were to be invited.

Unbeknown to anyone, a stranger named Sam drove by the restaurant on his way to work everyday at a hospital a little farther west. He noticed a new church name on the old restaurant sign. Something happened to him when he drove by the church. It made him look towards it. He felt peace when he drove by the church.

Sam was in pain. His memories hurt him. His heart hurt him. His conscience hurt him. He knew he needed church. He wanted to get right with God. He had been around an Apostolic Church before. But now he was ready.

He drove back that night, but the service night had been changed. Undeterred, Sam tried several other times to get there when there was church.

It happened, that on the night of the Wednesday Communion service, that Sam and his girlfriend showed up and sat in the back.

The pastor was caught off guard to see a new face on a Communion service night. He didn’t feel he could serve Communion to those that didn’t live for God. Almost apologetically, he explained what was getting ready to happen in the service and said that Communion was for the church family.

Sam and his girlfriend never budged. The pastor had tried to run them off in a nice way, but they had stayed. This was going to complicate things.

Cloths covered the trays that contained the Lord’s Supper. They sat on a table in front of the pulpit.

After worship and prayer the pastor read his scriptural passages and explained that he wanted to serve communion to the church one family at a time.

In so doing, he not only served each one, but personally prayed for them as well.

Sam and his girl friend quietly talked. He wanted to go up and take communion. She invited him to go in front of her, and if he got turned down, she wouldn’t have to wait to be turned down. She’d leave or something.

Every one else in the building had been served except Sam and his girl. Sam had stood at the back of the line. He didn’t know if anyone noticed or not, but tears were rolling down his cheeks.

It was like the floodgates of his heart opened. The tears streamed and heavily stained his shirt. The whole front of his shirt was wet with tears when he stood in front of the preacher to receive Communion. The Pastor laid his hands on Sam’s head and immediately, Sam began to speak in tongues. What an experience he got!

The church folks all said it was the best Communion service they’d ever had. Oh yes, Sam’s girlfriend got the Holy Ghost too. They got married too.

Here is Bro. Sam beating on the old drum during a praise service. He is a good worshipper.

His precious wife is now one of the praise singers. To God be the glory.

This Too Is Home Missions

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