9/9/10 John, 46
I struck up a conversation with a father (John) who was watching his son at a soccer game and found out he had immigrated here from Romania 12 years ago. He grew up in a Pentecostal home there, so I asked how he had been treated by the communist government that had been in charge there before the fall of the Soviet Union. John had been singled out while in the army which used various hardships to convince him to renounce his faith over a period of three months. When they failed in this they shipped him off to another military base, warning him things would be much worse for him there but in fact they became much better. As we talked I could tell he is active in his church and very familiar with the Bible. Wanting to be sure of his faith, I asked how he would respond if I had asked him how I could be sure I will go to heaven. "After all, we must be ready to share our faith in season and out of season, right?" (2 Timothy 4:2) He agreed but confessed he wouldn't know what to say. He said he does try to witness when he walks his dog at a park, and asks people "Do you know where you are going?" When they ask "where?" he responds "Go to church, they will tell you!" I told him about "The Way of the Master" which follows Jesus' example with the rich young ruler in using the Ten Commandments to show him his need for a Savior. (Mark 10:17-27) John had already heard about it from one of his sons who is a junior at the Moody Bible Institute. Like many church people who don't regularly share their faith, John knew that "Jesus died for us" but couldn't explain why. I spent some time doing so, demonstrating how I witness at the same time. I told him that as Christians we can't afford to wait for the world to come to our churches, we need to go out from our churches into the world. John said that they never taught this growing up in Romania, "but its not too late for me to start!"