Of Fish and Pizzas, Volunteering at the Global Leadership Summit
Every year, Willow Creek Church from South Barrington, IL, hosts Global Leadership Summits all over the world for church and business leaders to learn practical Biblical and leadership training. I’m not sure how long they’ve been coming to Bucharest, but this year, I got to go for free as a volunteer.
I use the term “volunteer” very loosely because what my job entailed was the rather simple task of walking around and picking up any leftover garbage that didn’t make it into the garbage cans. Since most people threw their trash into its appropriate receptacles, I spent the majority of my time sitting in on the sessions, meeting people, talking to friends, and trying to look important.
I did happen to learn some Romanian slang. A Teen Challenge staff member informed me
prostitutes pimps are referred to as fish, or peşte in Romanian. Brings a whole new angle to the term “fishers of men.” Later, when I tried to say the plural for “pizza” (guessing it would be something akin to “pizzi”), I was met with a lot of laughs and learned that “pizza” doesn’t follow standard grammar rules. What I said is apparently a pretty harsh way to talk about an immoral, immodest woman. Important to know if you’re ever considering ordering more than one pizza at Domino’s.
Most of the speakers at the summit were really good, but of everyone we heard, I walked away wanting more of whatever Bill Hybels has been infected with. When he talks, you just want to love Jesus and tell others about Him. His favorite line was, “The local church is the hope of the world,” and when he says it, it’s more than a cool slogan – he means it. He gets tears in his eyes when he talks about the mandate of the church to bring hope and restoration to the world. He’s unabashedly evangelical. He’s a pastor, and he’s proud of it, because he knows, deep down inside of him, that the only real hope this world has is through the church. Governments, non-profits, businesses, schools, and hospitals can never be what the local church is meant to be in this world. The local church is the one vehicle God has chosen to bring hope and redemption to the world through His Son, in the power of the Holy Spirit.
For all the fish and pizzas out there, there is hope. His name is Jesus, and He works through the local church.