12/12/09 Alex, Nina, both about 40
After the Men's Breakfast at church today Jonathan and I went to the laundromat a block away to share our hope in Christ. A middle aged man named Alex told me he is from Russia and has no religious background but hopes he could go to heaven if there is one. It turned out that his English was too limited to talk much further which was frustrating for both of us. I turned to talk to Nina, who was also from Russia but didn't know Alex. She has been in America for five years and spoke better English. Nina grew up in the Russian Orthodox Church and had religious classes there as a child. She was familiar with the Ten Commandments. I took her through an explanation of God's law and grace, using various analogies to explain my points. One that seemed to resonate was the idea that in a human courtroom, a good judge will not accept a bribe of any sort in exchange for ignoring justice, and neither will God. He won't accept our good works as a bribe to pay for the times we have broken His commandments. The punishment for our sins will be paid. Nina kept smiling and agreeing to everything I said. I thought maybe her English is not as good as she said and she's just trying to politely let me have my say and be on my way, so I checked several times to ask if what I was saying made sense. I kind of doubt she understood everything I shared, but God can make just one seed of truth grow to eternal life. Please pray He will.