11/14/10 Maurice , about 30
Two years ago I would never have done this. I was much too worried about my self image, unconcerned about what God says about me and far too concerned with what other people think. Even among most Christians I have discovered there is no glory in witnessing, so if its admiration I'm looking for, this isn't the way to find it. I went to the nearest Starbucks, to people working on laptops, and asked if they had a few minutes to answer some questions. Our culture says this is taboo, but the way I see it, these people are adults and they can say no if they want to - and some did. The first man was willing to talk until I told him my questions were about his spiritual beliefs. The second man said he is a Muslim and is not interested. A young lady said she was busy studying for a big exam. "That's okay", I said, "Thanks anyway". The fourth man - Maurice - lost in his headphones and hard at work on his laptop, was willing, and we had a long, interesting conversation. Maurice grew up in Chicago's Robert Taylor housing projects and is now an accountant. He claimed to have no religious background but had a wide variety of questions about the nature of God's existence and his purposes for creating us. His bottom line - after I had told him of both God's terrible wrath and tremendous love - "If I have to believe in a God who holds me accountable and will punish me for disobeying him, then I'll take my chances and go to hell if its all true." This was hard for me to hear, but I have to remind myself that God isn't finished with him yet.