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Three Lessons About Ministry from the Cinnamon Roll Lady

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Recently, we had one of our Answers in Genesis board meetings. AiG employees have come to love these three days out of the year because, when the board of directors meets, we get a special treat.

You see, chairman of the board, Don Landis, brings his wife, Beverly, and this year Beverly brought her sister, Joyce Deily. Together, these two ladies fire up the break room oven and fill the office with the smell of dough and spices, baking cinnamon rolls for the entire staff. And these rolls are all calorie free (well—we like to think so!)

Beverly’s mother- and father-in-law, Walter and Gladys Landis, ran a bakery in Quakertown, Pennsylvania. They invented the cinnamon roll recipe and named them “bippies.” But Beverly says instead of homemade dough, she uses pizza dough, lots of real butter and vanilla, and plenty of cinnamon—and of course her fluffy butter cream frosting. She uses the recipe to bless AiG staff two delicious days out of the year. “It’s my ministry to the employees,” Beverly said.

When employees flock to the break room to claim their treat, Beverly greets them with a friendly smile and open ear. In fact, Beverly says that her favorite part of her “bippie ministry” is being with the people and feeling like a part of the team. “My husband was chosen for a time like this, so I’m along for the ride and having a great time,” she said. “I’m part of the largest creation ministry in the world! Why wouldn’t I want to be here?”

Baking for AiG staff isn’t her only food-related ministry. She started a food pantry in the Landis’s hometown of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where Don serves as president of Jackson Hole Bible College and pastor at Community Bible Church.

It’s no surprise that this lady who finds ministry in something as simple as cinnamon rolls can teach us a few things about service:

  1. “Be prepared for God to let you know [what can be a ministry.]” Though Beverly wanted to serve while Don was in the board meetings, she never thought of her baking as a ministry until Don pointed it out. Now she believes that any little thing can be a ministry as long as you are loving people and serving the Lord.
  2. Beverly says she tries to always be prepared to serve people and to help bear their burdens, knowing that God brought them into her path for a reason.
  3. “You don’t walk into [people’s lives] for nothing.” Beverly says she tries to always be prepared to serve people and to help bear their burdens, knowing that God brought them into her path for a reason. “You don’t know the effect [ministry] has on people.”
  4. “The minute you start taking credit . . . it’s not so good.” Initially, Beverly was going to call her food kitchen Mimi’s Manna Pantry (after the name her grandchildren call her.) But she realized it isn’t her food ministry—it’s the Lord’s. She believes it’s important to give God glory for any good thing that we do.

You know, Beverly’s ministry reminds me of Jesus’ words in Mark 9:41: “For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in My name . . . will by no means lose his reward.” I think that applies to cinnamon rolls too.

I’m also thankful for the many other volunteers who daily greet guests, sweep floors, stuff envelopes, mow grass, or paint at the Ark Encounter and Creation Museum. What seem like simple tasks help keep this ministry going, and, if they’re done in Jesus’ name, these ministries won’t be forgotten in heaven—no matter how small they may seem. All these people and their ministries are an integral part of the AiG ministry.

To find out how you can volunteer at the Creation Museum or Ark Encounter, visit AnswersInGenesis.org/donate/volunteer/.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
Ken

This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

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