Author Jeanne Hill writes in a recent Reader’s Digest that, while her mother was the one long on etiquette, insisting on flowers in the house as well as a white starched tablecloth and napkins for each evening meal, it was really her father who taught her the most significant lessons regarding manners.
A 16-year-old Ozark lad had been hired to help dig out the storm cellar, and as the afternoon stretched into evening, he was invited to sit down at the family dinner.
A short passage was read from Scripture, prayer was offered, and everyone took up their forks. Everyone except this gangly teen—he picked up his knife. Noticing the custom of this house, he transferred eating utensils to copy the manner of the family, and soon beans and gravy tumbled awkwardly down his front.
An embarrassed silence began to grip the room, and just when it seemed as though nothing could redeem the situation, the author remembers her father laying aside his own fork, picking up his knife, and casually ladling both beans and gravy into his mouth. The evening was saved, and the hill-born lad happily resumed his familiar eating habit.
After the guest was gone, the father received much acclaim from other family members, but he turned the comments aside stating, “Good manners are nothing more than making the other person feel at ease.”
For decades, Karen Mains and her husband, David, have served God through religious communications—radio, television, and print publication. The are the co-authors of the Kingdom Tales Trilogy: Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance, and Tales of the Restoration. To find many valuable resources for pastors and churches at the Mainstay Ministries main website, please click here.
Karen has long had an interest in Christian hospitality and is the author of the best-selling book, Open Heart, Open Home.
An award-winning author of several other books, Karen continues to write content for her Christian blog, “Thoughts-by-Karen-Mains.” In so doing, she desires to touch the lives of Christian women and men and help them find ways to walk closer with the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, through silent retreats, spiritual teaching, women’s retreats, Christian vacation opportunities, and other ministry activities, Karen helps each Christian woman and man receive vital spiritual food.
Through her Hungry Souls ministry, Karen serves as a spiritual coach to many Christian women and men, and teaches a mentor-writing class. And, through the Global Bag Project, she is working to develop a network of African women who sew exquisite cloth reusable shopping bags. This microfinance women opportunity helps provide a much-needed sustainable income for struggling African families. For more information on this critically important project, please click here.
In addition, pastors will find special resources to help them create effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.