2/10/10 Jason, 32
I arrived 45 minutes early to a Bible study I lead at church, so I headed to a nearby laundromat and began a conversation with Jason, who was there with his 4 year old son. I let him know I'm from a nearby church and asked about his spiritual background. Though hesitant at first, within a few minutes he saw I was there to listen and not to judge and he pretty much shared his life story. He told of his involvement as a child with a Baptist church and its bus ministry, where he learned Bible stories but ultimately refused to turn to God, choosing instead the street and gangbanging life and ending up doing hard time in prison. He has multiple tattoos in memory of friends he has lost, and a hardened demeanor that let me know he has come a long way from the streets to doing the laundry for his girlfriend and their 5 children. Now, he sends his own children to that same church but isn't ready to go himself. He talks often to the Christian adults from the bus who pick up his kids for church every week. He associates "being saved" with "attending church" - a commitment he isn't ready to make. The biblical truths of his own personal sin, God's justice, judgment, and his need for salvation were so new to him that I could tell he has only been approached by Christians intending to get him to their church to hear the Gospel, rather than to bring the Gospel to him right where he is at. I encouraged him to continue the progress he has made in his life, but challenged him with some hard biblical truths as well. As I left he shook my hand, saying "Thanks for taking the time to talk to me, it really means a lot".