Serving at the Banquet

Rob Buxton and Derek Kattenberg serving at The Banquet.

Rob Buxton and Derek Kattenberg serving at The Banquet.

By Derek Kattenberg

It’s one of those days. It’s a Monday morning in the middle of a hard South Dakota winter. Your car doesn’t want to start, people are driving slowly, every light turns red just as you approach, your job stinks, you attitude stinks… you know the drill.

Or maybe your story is more like this.

One day mid-summer in the late 80’s I was driving along in deep thought over some difficulties at home. I was so busy driving and thinking that I didn’t see the stop sign. The next thing I remember is waking up in the hospital after being in a comma for days. The road to recovery was long. I am still able to do light tasks but I have trouble walking, it’s hard for me to speak and things everyone else takes for granted I struggle with. My wife left me shortly after getting out of the hospital. Her words to me were “I can’t live with a cripple”. I used to work hard and support my family. Now everything I do is hard work and I live off of my family and other support systems.

This is part of the story of a gentleman I worked with for a few years. Everything he did took extra effort. He was able to drive but always took it slow. I often wondered how many people got behind him on the road and swore about a slow driver. We live in a society the judges first and asks questions later.

Last week I had the chance to volunteer with the Novak Sanitation crew at The Banquet. We served breakfast to over 200 people that morning. The couple hours we are there go too fast to find out much about the people we are serving. But many times the scars are evident. Some scars were seen in their sad eyes and other scars were more noticeable at a quick glance like missing fingers and toes.

The weather was really cold on Thursday morning and I noticed some of our guests stayed for the entire time. For some of them this was their chance to get warm and enjoy fellowship of those serving and the other guests.

If you ever get the chance to serve at The Banquet or something similar I would strongly recommend doing it. You too will find a blessing in being the servant. “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men.”

Thanks Novak Sanitation for volunteering and also giving an amazing donation to The Banquet.