During our Sunday evening small group meetings, we’ve had the pleasure to get reacquainted with a couple from our church whom we’ve known for a long time. Mr. and Mrs. White are two of the most interesting people I know. They own and operate a sign carving business, and they do most of their business at flea markets and craft shows around the country.
This past Sunday night, everyone in our group was treated to a tour of their center of operation, and it was parked in our driveway.
Mr. White, the Gourmet Termite himself, travels with his own workspace in the back of a mini van. This may sound like a redneck operation, but nothing could be further from the truth.
I’ve got to tell you that I can’t remember the last time I was so impressed with someone’s ingenuity, creativity, and craftsmanship.
Sample signs hang from the inside roof of the van with spotlights lighting them up for passersby. Neatly stacked signs of all shapes and sizes await personalization. The van is equipped with a sound system so that customers can listen to music playing while they wait for their signs to be carved. It’s not a long wait though, since the Gourmet Termite can complete a custom carved sign from start to finish in three minutes.
A slide out working surface provides the Termite a place to sit down while he carves. Every necessary piece is right at his fingertips, and the foot pedal that powers his carving tool allows him to start and stop without wasted movement.
Where did he ever find such a workspace? He built it himself! Mr. W. told us that it took him one year to custom design the van that would carry them back and forth to Florida each winter and around to all the craft shows and flea markets in Pennsylvania in the summer months.
Mr. and Mrs. White are now at an age when many of their peers are retiring, but they seem to have no plans to retire. What keeps them going? Their mission.
Oddly, their mission is not just to sell signs. Their mission is to reach their customers and other people they meet with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
This elaborately engineered custom designed van is obviously the work of a genius craftsman, but it is just a tool to take them to places where they can meet people who may not know that Jesus loves them and died for them.
Mr. and Mrs. W. love to talk to people they meet in their travels, and they like to give out a free gift of scissors and a flyer to each one who comes by their business stand.
I salute them in their dedication to the Lord and consider myself blesssed to know them. They’ve had many interesting adventures and have lots of great stories to tell! What a pleasure to be a part of their lives again for these past six weeks.
Have you met any interesting people lately? If so, what have you learned from them?