I have something to share. It makes me ashamed, but I have to talk about it to get any closure.
All across America, there are coffee and tea stains sitting in various church sanctuaries where Aaron and I have sat. It began at the first church that we ever started attending together: College Church of the Nazarene (North Campus). We were still dating and Aaron would bring his coffee or we would get a cup at the church and hustle inside before the service started. At some point during the church service–usually in a transition time from standing up to sitting down–bam, coffee cup spilled. More than once this happened.
Next, we started attending River Valley Christian Fellowship. It very specifically says that no drinks are allowed in the sanctuary. Aaron constantly assured me that it would be alright. Well, sure enough, after a few weeks of attending I once again knocked over a coffee cup. I couldn’t stand the shame, so we moved over to the other side of the sanctuary so we wouldn’t be recognized. And yet, I still didn’t learn my lesson. Aaron brings in a cup of coffee, I somehow manage to knock it over. EVERY SINGLE TIME, it felt.
Now, after doing this maybe three times at River Valley, I finally introduced the policy that prohibited us from bringing in beverages to church. I really put my foot down. It was just getting to be too much. We were running out of sides to sit in the sanctuary! People would soon know us as The Spillers. For the rest of our time at River Valley, we had a spill-free experience. I felt really good about the new-found freedom of not bringing any drinks to church. No drinks = no chance of making more stains in our beloved sanctuary. It was really a fool proof (or should I say…spill proof?) plan.
Well, that all brings me to today. We had yet to bring any beverages to our new church, which was working out really well for us. No spills, no severe looks from our neighbors, all was fine and dandy. Until, Aaron decides that he wants to bring a to-go cup of hot tea. I forgot all about my policy and said, “Make me one too!” Everything is going really well until we get up to pray for someone in our church. We head back to our seats and I can see Aaron’s cup in the distance. I truly was so focused, chanting in my head, “Don’t knock it, don’t knock it, don’t knock it, Janel.” But it’s like my feet had a mind of their own! Boop! I saw the cup tip over slow-motion-Matrix style. At first I thought that nothing was going to spill out because this certain lid was the type that screws on. There’s no way any tea would fall out! Oh, how wrong I was! There may as well have not even been a lid! While Aaron is whispering “Quick! Hide it!” I think I may have loudly exclaimed, “I seriously just did that!!”
Yep, as if actually spilling tea everywhere wasn’t bad enough, I made it known to the world that I had, once again, been the instigator of a stain that will live forever in the multi-colored, textured carpet of a church.
I guess I mostly feel bad because I really think people look down on you if you spill a drink in their church. They paid for that carpet! How dare I soil it with coffee, tea, or any other caffeinated beverage! And I completely agree. If I sat next to less responsible people who spilled their beverage during church, I would probably look down on them too!
As a disclaimer, Aaron wants me to inform you that he has never been the one to knock over a drink. Completely true. It has always been me. He also wants me to inform you that I have never given him my beverage after spilling his. There. That not only makes me a terrible church member, but a less-than-perfect wife. 😉
Phew, I feel slightly better. I hope that if there are any church members from those churches reading this, that they will forgive me. And I promise I will never bring a drink into church again. I have truly learned my lesson this time!