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LifeWay store employee gives slice of the pie ministry to her customers

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–Frankie Shockley may be small in stature, but her heart looms large for her LifeWay customers. Slender and petite, Shockley’s soft southern drawl, big smile and twinkling eyes makes the expression “sweet as pie” more than just a cliché. It’s who she is, and part of what she hopes to pass on to her customers.

“I enjoy being able to meet my fellow Christians in Christ, as well as non-Christians, and getting the chance to show them God’s love,” said Shockley, a church resource specialist who has worked in the retail store division for more than 23 years.

Shockley hasn’t always been in the church resources area. She worked in the gifts area for several years, which included traveling and making purchasing decisions for the store.

“I really enjoyed working in gifts and I wasn’t sure I would like it when I moved to church resources,” she admitted. “I enjoyed the travel and bringing back all of the beautiful things for our store to sell.”

She soon discovered the joy in working with people instead of knick-knacks.

“I love that I can help a man find a good Bible for his wife, a book with encouragement for a mom, or a devotional for a teenager,” said Shockley. “My customers are really a blessing to me.”

One of those blessings came in the form of a young man who had wandered into the downtown Nashville LifeWay Christian Store where Shockley works. She found him in the back of the store, sitting in a corner chair, asleep.

“He seemed so distraught looking,” Shockley recounted. “Even though he was well-dressed, I got the sense that he might be homeless.”

The young man woke up suddenly and Shockley gently talked with him, assuring him he was fine right where he was. She discovered that he had just moved to the Music City from Australia, one of the hundreds of young people who come into Nashville each year, intent on making it in the music industry.

“He had sold everything he had and didn’t have a place to go,” said Shockley. “I sensed that his soul was really yearning for something and I told him to just rest in the Lord, and not to worry about leaving.”

Shockley connected the young man with someone from the Nashville Rescue Mission who in turn was able to help him get a car and eventually find work at a restaurant.

“He brought me a piece of pie for Christmas,” said Shockley, her smile beaming from ear to ear. “I may not know of everyone that I may be able to help touch, but I know one thing. God’s love is a circle.”

Or maybe a slice of pie.

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  • Sara Horn