For fourteen years, I've been having breakfast most Wednesday mornings at the infamous Towne Crier. It's been a wonderful time to be with preachers from other Churches of Christ in town.
As members have drifted back and forth from one church to another over "major differences," we've just smiled, enjoyed our friendship and remembered that what goes around comes around.
It's rare for anyone to order anything other than the One Egg Special. (Yes, it may remind you of the Blue Plate Special that Barney used to order at the diner in Mayberry.)
One egg, meat, and bread. It's $2.19 for the breakfast. Yes, those of you in Manhattan, you read that correctly. It's less than you pay for a gallon of gas. (I know there's an easy response based on double-entendre, but don't go there.)
We get the same thing. But we order it SO differently!
I'm the "normal" one egg special guy: one egg over medium, bacon, and a biscuit — with water. No bells and whistles. Just pass me the strawberry jam.
Eddie orders the same thing, except that he has iced tea. That's right: iced tea for breakfast. When the waitresses see him coming, they know it's time to pour the tea.
Terry's one egg special goes like this: one egg scrambled, bacon, and a pancake (believe it or not, they'll substitute a pancake for the biscuit). Water.
Don's order adds an interesting twist: "I'd like the one egg special with an extra egg." Now I'm not Einstein, but wouldn't that be a two egg special? Apparently not. Coffee.
Phil is Mr. Atkins. He asks for extra bacon instead of the biscuit. Bring on the protein; hold the carbs. Diet Dr. Pepper to drink.
So there you have it. We place five "one egg special" orders. But they look very different.
It's funny to us that some of our members probably think our churches are vastly different. But we're all just one egg specials. One may be low carb, one may have the extra egg, and another is downing iced tea.
But we're way more similar than most people suspect. In small worlds, minuscule differences can look VERY LARGE.
Can you imagine how much energy is burned in many communities by members of various churches talking in outrage about what another church is teaching or doing?
I'd like to think that in those communities, one morning a week the ministers are getting together for a bit of Towne Crier Koinonia: a one egg special, trust, deep concern, and a little humor.