I’m going to let the cat out of the bag. I know that many people will be mad at me for this…but, I’ve just got to tell the secret. It’s eating away at me and if I don’t get it out I may just go crazy!!
Chick-fil-A is a Christian company!
There, I said it. I know you probably just fell out of the chair…completely shocked by this news. Please compose yourself and keep reading. Let me know when you’re ready…I’ll wait…
Ok, maybe you already knew that. It’s really no secret at all. In fact, it’s kind of a big deal for this company that they are a Christian company. I would go so far as to say that they “get it” far better than many Christians that I’ve had the privilege of interacting with. Often, in fact, going to Chick-fil-A can be a better experience than going to church. Yes, I said it…
I believe there are things that we could all learn from this organization in order to help us be better Christians. Here are a few of them:
- My Pleasure. So often, when I say “thank you” at a restaurant to an employee or server, if I get a response at all, it’s usually “uh huh”, “yep”, or something like that. I’ll even get an occasional “you’re welcome.” But the employees at Chick-fil-A take it to another level – they say “my pleasure.”
What are they saying, really? It’s your pleasure to serve me my food? It’s your pleasure to take my tray and throw away my food? It’s your pleasure to clean up the mess that my kids made all over the floor? Maybe. But, the entire sentence is: “It’s my pleasure to serve you.” They understand that they are there to serve. It may not always be pretty and glamorous and in fact it will probably be messy…but they are there to serve.
How do you do on serving others? I’m great so long as it doesn’t inconvenience me. I can do it all day long so long as I’ve had enough sleep, I’m having a good day, I don’t have anywhere else to be, I have plenty of money, etc. etc. What if…what if we all took the stance that it’s our pleasure to serve others? When it’s messy. When it’s inconvenient. When it costs us something.
- Give it away. Ever had an order made wrong at a fast food restaurant? Have you ever had the experience where the employee behind the counter makes you feel like it’s your fault somehow that they gave you extra onions instead of no onions? On tope of that, it seems like that getting a sandwich remade is somehow like buying a car. They have to bring the manager over and then go in the back room and confer a little longer. Then, if the stars are in alignment for you, they will reluctantly re-make the sandwich for you. Been there?
Not Chick-fil-A. If there’s something wrong with your order, they’ll not only replace it, but they’ll usually give something extra. One time, my family ordered a 4-piece nugget for my son, and the box only had 3 in it. Yes, I’m a nugget counter. If you’re not, you should try it…it’s exhilarating. When we brought this to the attention of the Chick-fil-A worker, they didn’t get a manager, they didn’t confer with anyone – they apologized. Then, they gave us not one nugget to make the situation right, but an entire new 4-piece nugget (that’s 7 nuggets total for the nugget-counters out there)!
How are you with your stuff? This includes money, possessions, and time. Do you keep it all as if you are trying out for the TV show Hoarders? Or, do you give it away? Chick-fil-A has been operating this way for years…and they’re still around. It’s counter-intuitive. You would think that this mode of operation would lead to being poor or out of business. Although it’s counter-intuitive, it is Kingdom-intuitive. As Christians, we should understand that when we give stuff away to help others, it will return to us “30, 60, or even 100 fold.”
- Invest in your family. Daddy/daughter date nights. Mother/son date knights. Balloon animal artists. And so on… Chick-fil-A wants me to spend more time with my children and family. They understand the idea that it’s the parents of kids that have the greatest influence in their lives for the first 18 years and the only way to influence them is to spend time together. Chick-fil-A facilitates this.
How are you at spending time with your kids? I want to spend as much time with my kids as possible. But, life happens and things get in the way. Chick-fil-A helps me to make time for my children and do meaningful things with them. Because it is my influence and example in their lives that will lead to them to certain truths. I can’t expect the church, who is with my kids only 2 or 4 hours per week to be the main discipleship they receive. It must come from me. And that comes through spending time together.
- Cling to what you believe. It’s no secret that Chick-fil-A has been tested in recent years. I’m sure there’ve been many more tests that we don’t hear about in the media. But the company has clung to what they believe and have not waivered from their core values as an organization. They believe in community and supporting worthwhile causes…and they do it unapologetically. I know that the ministries at the church I attend have benefited greatly from the sponsorship and support of our local Chick-fil-A restaurant and their leadership.
How do you do with the things you believe in? Do you cling to them and stand by them when you are tested and confronted with opposing views? Or are you silent in the face of adversity and conflict? I could definitely do better in this area. I want my convictions to guide me in everything I do – not just when the road is easy and when I’m surrounded by like-minded people.
What about you? Are these things that come easy for you? Are there other lessons that you’ve witnessed that could be learned from Chick-fil-A?