Even for someone on a low-sodium diet, you can never really get enough of it, which is probably why it is one of the key ingredients on the menu. For a twelve-count of nuggets is said to contain some 1460 milligrams of sodium, or roughly 61% of your daily needs when it comes to salt intake. It’s totally worth it, however, as most folks would agree that the nuggets at Chick Fil-A are uniformly delicious, enticing both to kids and all the rest of us.
There’s another kind of salt at those restaurants, however, which is equally appealing. For what is likewise ubiquitous no matter which store you stop in–or in these days, drive through–the response you will get to your order is inevitably always, “My pleasure.” And even more impressive, it seems like those teenagers working there actually mean it. (One of them took the time, in fact, to write a personal message on our take-out bag.) For along with whatever other business mantras they have may have adopted, the franchise owners of Chick Fil-A have made a decision to consciously act on Christian principles as a business.
And in that sense, they’ve taken to heart the words of St. Paul in Colossians 4.6 to “let your conversation (literally, your logos or word) be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” It’s an odd turn of words, to be sure, but it points us towards an understanding of the function of salt itself—both to preserve and to flavor whatever it is sprinkled upon, that is, to keep it from spoiling and to enhance its taste.
All of which is a goal worth pursuing in our present stressful season of separation, social distancing and shortages. For if all those following Jesus make a conscious decision to check our own selfishness, inhibit our impatience, ratchet back our hasty retorts, and speak only with grace to all, though we may not be able to bring down any individual’s fever, we will be able to lower the temperature of the interactions around us and even short-circuit some of the snarkiness that seems to have seeped into this world.
What’s more, when we actually put others first then it will indeed be our pleasure to serve them, whatever their needs might be. More significantly, Revelation 4.11 reminds us that it is for God’s pleasure that we exist and were created. And as John Piper has observed, God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.
In these days ahead, thus, as the inconvenience of impoundment increases for many, may the conversation of each of us indeed be seasoned with salt, preserving what’s important, and flavoring all things with the grace of God.
After all, isn’t that what the people of God—or to paraphrase a theological term– the chick fil-aity—are supposed to be about?