Kristi and I went to dinner at Carrabba’s in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Our waiter introduced himself as Muhammad, and he spoke with a thick, Middle Eastern accent.
He was an excellent server, but I wondered if any of the other customers had given him a hard time due to his name. I also wondered if he secretly disapproved when I ordered wine. These questions, and so many others, seemed inappropriate, even embarrassing, to consider asking. If someone is obligated to wait on me, I don’t feel right taking advantage of his position to ask him personal questions.
But personal, even spiritual, conversations do happen in restaurants.
Earlier today, while Kristi was still finishing her work at church, I took the girls to McDonald’s. We were still in our church clothes. We were seated by the door, and a couple walked by. The woman retrieved a chicken nugget that Sadie, age 4, had dropped on the floor, and she threw it away for us.
The man said, “You have a nice looking family.”
I thanked him.
The woman asked, “Did you all go to church?”
I said we did.
“We’re on vacation, so we didn’t get to go,” the woman said. “But we watched Charles Stanley on TV.”
I told her that sounded good to me.
“Well, bless you guys,” the man said, and they left.