6/7/11 Trie, about 50
At a grocery store Starbucks I used a MDB as a conversation starter and met Trie, who told me he had come to Texas as a refugee from Vietnam in 1975. He and his family were Buddhist, and he had also been under Communist teaching, but his family was "adopted" by a Lutheran church and helped him come to faith in Christ. From our conversation he appeared to be a sincere believer in Christ who has somehow become stuck in a holding pattern for many years. He says he is too busy to be a part of a church, and he hasn't been reading his Bible, and this soon became evident from the lack of humility I sensed as he told different stories about himself and his good works. I could tell he has repeated his litany of beliefs about his own goodness because he began repeating himself after awhile, like a scratched record that keeps skipping back to the beginning. I think he is in a sort of spiritual holding pattern and has stopped growing in his faith because he hasn't been under solid biblical teaching and he hasn't been exposed to and challenged by other believers. The Bible says that we believers help each other's faith "just as iron sharpens iron" and I spent much of the conversation trying to persuade Trie to take advantage of the opportunities for fellowship and growth that involvement in a local fellowship can give him.