Why Do We Have Mints in the Lobby?

This morning I was refilling the candy dishes in the lobby of our Church with mints, and I began thinking, “Why am I doing this?” Suddenly my mind went back several years in my ministry.

At one of the Church’s I served, I was a part of an elder’s meeting shortly after arriving. Somewhere in the conversation, one of the elders started talking about our guests. He went on to say that we had a man who usually did the greeting of everyone as the came into the building to worship. He then went on to say, “Unfortunately he has horrible breath.”

Silence fell over the room. The cat had been let out of the bag. I assume everyone knew it was a problem, but no one wanted to offend this man by addressing it. The sad result, everyone knew the problem, but no one had a plan to fix it without making things worse.

In all youthful confidence, I said, “I will take care of it.” They smiled as if to reply, “Sure kid. You take care of it. Let’s see what kind of mess you can make.”

That week I went to the store and bought a big bag of peppermint candy. I found two small baskets at the Church. Then I filled them with candy and placed them on the table in the lobby where we set the printed programs and other Church material.

The next Sunday, I watched our friendly greeter walk into the lobby, see the candy, pick one up and pop it in his mouth. That day his breath was fresh, and no one who attended was offended. Problem solved.

Now, here I am many years later and a basket full of mints has filled every Church lobby I have served. Sure, some parents get mad because their child doesn’t need any sugar. They usually tell me this after their kid has stuffed several in their mouth one after another. I still have remained steadfast. The mints have stayed and will stay in the lobby until I give up the ministry.

This week the mints remind me that sometimes the solutions in life are often simple and overlooked. In all my years I have never had another complaint about bad breath in the lobby because there is always a solution waiting. I imagine that one of the problems you are facing this week may seem huge, yet a little creative thought will bring a solution that is as easy as a mint in the lobby.

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