5/20/12 Gabriel, about 18
" Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season..." 2 Tim. 4:2 On my way back to my car after an early morning church meeting, I saw a young man (Gabriel) at the gas station across the intersection sitting against a fence, looking kind of dejected. I felt my heart go out to him, so I headed over. I asked him, "Hey, do you have a minute for an interesting question? He did, so I asked, "What do you think comes next after this life?" He turned to look at me, tears in his eyes. "It's interesting you ask that, I'm thinking about it a lot. My grandmother just died Friday." I expressed my condolences and spent some time just listening and being compassionate. We came to a point in the conversation where it would have been appropriate to focus on the gospel, but suddenly his sister drove up. It seemed like they must have been arguing and she was demanding that he leave with her immediately, so I was losing my chance to share the Gospel. I didn't have my usual backpack full of a variety of witnessing literature that I take with on intentional witnessing outings, but then I remembered I had brought a few gospel tracts with me "just in case". I normally use tracts more as conversation starters and I would much rather have a heart to heart conversation, but in this case I was so glad to have some quality tracts with me. Gabriel took one, thanking me for coming over to talk with him. Just before he got in his sister's car he yelled "Is your number in here?" "Yes!" "Great!" and he was gone. I share this as an encouragement to be ready at all times to share the Gospel, in and out of season. We often fear starting a witnessing conversation because we don't know if we'll have time to finish it, but having some good gospel tracts on hand, with our contact information, can help us to be ready at all times.