Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Volunteer (11/23/06)
TITLE: Rubbing for Missions
By Ruth Neilson
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Come help rub down the pork for the Flashfire youth ministries mission’s trip to Chicago. We begin at 6:30 Friday evening and plan to go all night, come and go, as you need. We’ll make extras so its not too late to order a plate of pulled pork. Call Pastor David if you want to help make our goals.
The Flashfire Youth Ministries fundraiser’s opening sentence was off, almost distasteful. But it worked. It drew in the extra workers that the fundraiser needed. That was the only reason Jan was there at eleven in the evening. Well, in reality, that wasn’t the only reason that she was there. Jan Richards often found herself in the midst of hyperactive teenagers, for a simple reason; these young people were her ministry.
The teens were already wired on a combination of candy and soda. Most of them had abandoned the cause of rubbing the butts down with the red seasoning and had vanished off into another room with one of the other sponsors.
Lifting a pork slab from one plastic bin to another was somewhat of a mind-numbing task. One that the teens had done too many times and the ‘butt’ jokes had begun and ended with the unintentional insult of the senior pastor (who just happened to be a rather plump man). Thankfully, he had taken the joke well enough—and the resulting punishment was the order for the younger members to burn off the extra energy playing a game of tag or some energy spending game.
“Do you need some help?” Barb, the oldest member of Flashfire, asked as she leaned against the doorframe. Jan smiled faintly and nodded as Barb grinned back, doused her hands in sanitizer, sat down in front of a butt, and began to work on the rumps in front of her. Jan let out a sigh of relief once she realized that they were down to only ten pork slabs before they were ready to be smoked.
“You know, I never thought I’d see so many big butts in one night.” Barb giggled, leaning towards the silly straw that stuck out of the large cup of soda. Jan grinned, biting back her own laughter.
“I don’t think I can believe that we have done almost fifty butts in one night. Though, I have to ask, who did the wording for the bulletin?”
Barb grinned, and snickered harder. It was clear that the caffeine was loosening the normally reserved teen’s tongue.
“I’m the innocent one.”
“Yeah, for once; now spill.”
Barb laughed again with a snort, “It was a group effort.”
Jan closed her eyes with a groan. She could imagine the young people of the church sitting around a table throwing out random ideas and something along the lines of: “rubbing our butts” coming out as a joke that refused to die.
“Who started the joke?” Jan pressed, smiling faintly.
The sponsor watched in fascination as the normally calm and reserved Barb turned red. The shade was similar to a lobster and spread rapidly down the teens face and neck, and somehow found its way traveling down the normally porcelain skin until it mingled with the maroon rub. The total effect was enough to cause the small smile to grow wider; the girl had answered her question without saying a word.
“Then congratulations,” Jan began; her laughter was beginning to bubble up.
Barb frowned and wiped her hands together, trying to get the extra rub off her hands. “For what?”
Jan couldn’t help it any longer. “For finally beating the boys to the ‘butt’ of the jokes.”
The teen rolled her eyes and stuck out her tongue as she once again tried to brush clean her hands as Jan started to cackle.
“Just for that, you have to finish this up on your own now.” Barb announced over the cackling laughter. Barb wasn’t mad; Jan could tell that much with the mischievous smirk on the teen’s lips. It was good to know, that teenagers could take the jokes just as well as they could dish them out.
Author’s Note: A Boston Butt is actually the pork shoulder roast and prime rib and this is an actual fundraiser that my church youth group has done. Smoke the pork with rub on it and then pull it part for pulled pork sandwiches.
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