The Gospel of Panera

24 Mar

Every week after my Weight Watchers weigh-in, Saturday at 7 AM, I head over to Panera Bread for my weekly treat of an Asiago cheese bagel (sliced and toasted), veggie cream cheese spread, and caffe latte (skinny).  If my husband is available, he goes with me.

I have noticed some things in Panera that I see in other places where people become “regulars.”  

My first observation is that people are not at all polite to wait staff in places like Panera (maybe everywhere!).  “Gimme a . . .” is a very typical way for people of all ages to order.  Guess Mama never taught them “please,” but I cringe every time I hear this.  It is often the same person who comes back, time after time, because their bagel is not the right degree of hot or toasted or whatever . . . 

Secondly, it is typical of all of us to not learn the name of the person who waits on us every single week.  Saturday, when the gal with the long gray hair handed me my latte for perhaps the 40th time in a year, I asked her to move her hair aside for a second so I could see her nametag.  “Thanks, Karen–I will remember your name from now on . . .”  (Don’t we all want to be called by name?  That is why it is so special to us when God says He does it!!!).  

Thirdly, and finally, some of these casual coffee places have the best informal Bible studies ever.  There are several men’s studies every Saturday morning at Panera.  One is always taking up the corner table for ten!!!  And that, my friends, is freedom of religion at its best.  Anywhere there are people, there can be a Bible study.  This is not state support of a religion, but just individual citizens exercising their right to gather and discuss what interests them!  Praise God for our freedoms!!!  

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