You most likely have read “reviews” of many different kinds over the years – movie reviews, hotel reviews, music reviews, restaurant reviews, etc. While reviews can be helpful to read when you know very little about the experience or place that you are considering, one thing that those reviews don’t cover is the SPIRITUAL component of what is being considered. GOD is left out of the process! Well…that is assuredly NOT true about the “Connection Café,” a Spirit-of-GOD-motivated creation that has now seen its “Grand Opening” through Gwen Shamblin’s inspired dream…a dream of having an eatery and place of camaraderie whose entire EXISTENCE would be based upon enjoying the fellowship of Saints and the delicious foods and beverages that our incredible GOD has put together! Combine that with impeccable service, true joy and smiling faces from wall-to-wall, Godly music and videos playing in the background, and a café décor that bests what so much of the world has to offer, and the “Connection Café” is a runaway hit…a HEAVENLY experience from start-to-finish.
When you think about “going out for dinner or lunch” or stopping by a “café” for coffee, a sandwich, dessert, a glass of wine, etc., you USUALLY accept certain “trade-offs” when selecting your venue. That coffee shop has great coffee but it’s loud and the service is so-so. That restaurant has great service but the food is just okay. That café has good service and great desserts, but the clientele and topics of conversations around you can be downright offensive. With the Connection Café, however, there are NONE of those trade-offs. Every table is freshly decorated and every customer has a word of praise for GOD (first and foremost) and an encouraging word for you. Every note of every song or video is from the Heavens and truly is playing the “soundtrack to your lives” in Christ. The food and beverages are “choice.” Everything is carefully crafted and hand-prepared so that it looks AND tastes fantastic! The service is, truly, second-to-none. There are no “servers in bad moods” nor is there anyone who is “too busy” to notice that you are there. It’s just…HEAVENLY…in every way.
Thursday evening, October 18th featured the Café’s Grand Opening, and Gwen was ever-so-gracious in guiding the crowd through an outstanding evening of fellowship, food, and fun…and the celebration closed, very appropriately, in WORSHIP to GOD in song…as Michael Shamblin led a firepit-warmed gathering on the patio in praises to GOD. Here is just a “taste” of what some of the Grand Opening’s attendees had to say about the evening and about Connection Café…
- The experience was heavenly! Praying together, joyful fellowship, toasting to God’s goodness, the food was awesome, servants caring for us, Spirit-filled singing, with a warm fire – Come on! Our hearts were refreshed – Glory to God in the highest! – Rusty and Lisa Henry
- The experience was, in a word, divine! God’s attention to details through Gwen was in everything… from the delicious food brought hot to your table by well-mannered, Godly servants, to the perfection in mood lighting and room temperature and Godly fellowship and conversations! To top off the night, we were fireside – singing praises up to God under the stars. This is simply unprecedented anywhere in the world! A delightful honor to experience that will never be forgotten! Praise God for yet another way to unify and give Him all the glory! – Catherine Zanoni
- Dining with Saints, attentive wait staff that (unlike other places) never interrupted our conversation inappropriately, a beautifully arranged and perfectly cooked meal including the most flavorful and tender meat I have ever had, just the right lighting, room temperature, and music volume – all of this made for a most pleasant dining experience and memorable evening! – Jessica Walters
- Wow! That is all I can say about last evening. Absolutely beautiful evening where you KNOW that God is being put where He rightly belongs: revered, loved, adored, praised, and obeyed! Humbled, convicted, grateful, overjoyed to run this race with more passion and resolve! To get to experience something like last night was amazing and truly an honor. There is something magical about being in a setting with like-minded people where you see God’s Word put into practice, from the amazing service of the volunteers to the conversation about God to the music and the fellowship. Gratefully giving God Praise this and every day! – Chris Boerman
To sum it up, this exchange with Elisabeth Lorenz, who attended the Grand Opening with her husband Jim, paints a beautiful picture…not only of what the Grand Opening was like, but also what we ALL can look forward to as the days go by.
REMNANT NEWS – Elisabeth, give us an overall “impression” of the evening…including what it meant to you spiritually to see this place of fellowship and joy open.
ELISABETH – I feel as though words cannot do justice in describing what we all experienced last night. It was clear that the SPIRIT of GOD and HIS LOVE were present as one could not make it happen nor recreate what we all witnessed last night…and Gwen has proven faithful, once again, to God’s lead and prompting to provide a place for the Saints…a bit of heaven on earth…Connection Café!
REMNANT NEWS – Okay…so take us through the arrival…and your overall first impressions. It must have made an impact on you.
ELISABETH – The beautiful evening started from the moment we rounded the corner and pulled in the parking lot…with people on the patio, around the outdoor fire talking and laughing. Walking in the door and being graciously greeted by Anique Leaman was just the beginning. I was literally speechless for the first ten minutes as the restaurant smelled amazing, was perfectly lit with a golden hue, with Zion music playing, smiles and hugs every direction you turned, and it was the perfect temperature!
REMNANT NEWS – Incredible! And so…once you were inside and seated, take us through the dinner…the service, food, ambience, conversation, etc…
ELISABETH – The service was second-to-none, with the most delightful and happy servers floating around like Angels as we enjoyed the best of the best foods and wine, all within God’s extremely delightful and generous boundaries. Each “toast” and all the conversations were memory-making and all focused up on God. There was not a sad or troubled face, but every single person was a living light…HOW POWERFUL…all for the Glory of God!
REMNANT NEWS – How did the Grand Opening conclude? How did it differ from wrapping up an evening at other “nice restaurants” you’ve experienced?
ELISABETH – As Gwen so perfectly said last evening, we ended with the “best dessert” – Michael Shamblin leading us in singing praises to the ONE TRUE GOD under the stars. I pray I never forget this night and never lose sight of how taken care of and blessed beyond measure we are. God is truly a spoiler, and I praise God for Gwen and her family being faithful to His call…living out and therefore ushering in His will being done on Earth as it is in Heaven!
Well…there you have it. It is amazing to consider that this is a review and summary of a RESTAURANT experience. GOD has done it again – By His Spirit, He has led Gwen to bring YET ANOTHER part of our lives into even CLEARER FOCUS. There is a “restaurant,” now, that exists not ONLY to “feed you” and/or “entertain you”…sure, it does that and does it VERY WELL…but MORE importantly, it truly provides another “taste” of HEAVEN on EARTH – in food and beverage, in fellowship, in song, in joy and peace, in conversation, in fellowship, and in praise to the Father. Praise GOD for “Connection Café!” And STAY TUNED for more information about the Café’s days and hours of operation…coming soon!