2/6/13 Lou, 72
An older gentleman named Lou told me he doesn’t believe much about religion because some of the worst people he knows of are religious leaders. I had reached out to him as he was eating at a Burger King, and I knew I needed to take some time to hear his story and try to get to the root of where these criticisms came from. I explained that it works both ways, that just as some leaders who misrepresent God can drive people away from Him, other people who do follow God faithfully can be one of the main reasons people turn toward Him. I asked Lou - “How about you - have you ever had anyone like that in your life?” As we talked about it Lou began to realize that there really are a lot of people he knows of, both public figures and people he knows personally, who really are following God and setting a good example for others. He began to agree it is foolish to base one’s relationship with God on other people, and that ultimately we are accountable to Him alone, outside of what anyone around us says or does. Hearing and talking through all this helped to take away his excuses before sharing the Gospel, and as I did so it became obvious that corrupt religious leaders are not the only barrier between Lou and a right relationship with God. In fact, they serve as a convenient smokescreen for the real reasons - his own sinful rebellion against Him. Being older and very set in his ways, Lou couldn’t admit his need for repentance from his sins, even though he agreed with the various points I was making. I could tell he needed time to process what I had already told him, and I believe the Holy Spirit also wants time to do His good work in Lou. So after sharing the basics of the Gospel, I decided to just spend some time getting to know him and learning about his very interesting life. I think Lou may not remember the details of the Gospel I shared, but I do believe he will remember our conversation in general, that I was someone who not only took the time to reach out to him with the Gospel but that I took the time to get to know him personally as well. If I’m going to be used as an excuse in Lou’s life, let it be as an excuse for him to find out more about God rather than to drive him away.