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One thing I love about my current life is being around people from other cultures – and not just South Asian culture. I’ve got friends and coworkers who are from Latin America, various places on the African continent, Australia, and New Zealand. The diversity of experience and perspective is a rich blessing and I’m always challenged to see things in a different way.

Like last weekend when a friend (she’s from New Zealand) and I were at a campground, doing some planning for an upcoming retreat. It’d been a long day talking logistics and we were sitting, enjoying five minutes of the beautiful mountainside view, waiting for dinner to be ready.

She had a book with her and was reading a chapter out loud while we waited. It was a book written by an American pastor. In the chapter she read to me, the author tells a story involving an attendance board in his church on which the previous week’s attendance numbers, along with offering totals, were posted with movable numbers set into grooves.

In the stream of reading, she commented, “That’s an odd thing to have in a church”.

And I simply smiled.

Because my church at home totally had one of those. In fact, I’ve probably been in more churches with one than without one.

But in her off-handed comment, I glimpsed the attendance board from an outsider’s perspective and thought, You know… that is an odd thing to have in a church!

Have you seen something from a different perspective recently?

What’s the oddest thing you’ve ever seen in a church?