Walter: 21st Century Levite

I spent a good part of this afternoon setting up for a concert taking place this evening at my church. It was a very ordinary afternoon until I had one of those moments where I saw something for the 100th time and noticed it for the first time. Normally, after leading two Sunday services, I’m headed home to grab lunch and get to work on the next week. And normally, as I walk out of the sanctuary, I see Walter quietly and carefully cleaning up after everyone. He’s picking up used bulletins, putting Hymnals back in their respective racks, sharpening pencils, taking joke $1,000,000 offering envelopes and throwing them away, etc. Just about every Sunday morning that I’m there, Walter is there afterwards, cleaning up after 1500 people.

Today, though, as I was putting music stands in place and running a few patterns on the piano, I had the opportunity to watch as Walter cleaned up the sanctuary, just as he has done for years now. I’ve seen it many times, but today had the opportunity to truly notice what it’s like when someone serves quietly behind the scenes, perhaps never getting any kind of attention or appreciation. Well, I’m sure that Walter would attest that those communion cups don’t throw themselves away. Even if they did, Walter would still find a way to prepare the room for the next service. He’s a 21st-century Levite.

I saw — I noticed — and I appreciated. And I still do. I may get to be up front, waving my arms like semaphore and singing “scooby ba da doobie doot doo” or whatever, and Walter is standing by, patiently waiting for everyone to leave so he can make it look like we were never there.

It was good to see on a very busy and somewhat stressful day.

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