6/18/2013 Rego 17
I began a conversation with a young man named Rego who was sitting at a park bench, all out of breath. He is a “tagger” and had just escaped from the police, having been detained for defacing property with his graffiti “artwork”. He was very willing to talk about the gospel but I could see he was having a hard time following my line of reasoning. He was astonished and distracted with thoughts of the close encounter with arrest and imprisonment that he had just been through, yet he obviously enjoyed our conversation, so I decided to switch from trying to explain the law and grace of the gospel to my personal testimony. I talked about how I became a Christian at the same age as himself – 17 – and what my faith relationship with Jesus has meant for me ever since. I interspersed it with practical and spiritual advice for Rego that I had learned at his age and in my experiences as a believer. I really didn’t feel I could explain the gospel with him in his state of mind so I did the next-best thing - helping him to see how the gospel might be relevant to his life and how Christians like myself might have some important and helpful things to share. I think in his state of distraction this was probably the best way I could have communicated some Gospel truths. In our hopes to spread the Gospel we shouldn’t forget one of the most helpful things we can share – our own personal testimony of what God has done and taught us in our life. People like Rego often don’t remember exactly what we say to them, but they will remember what kind of people we were when we said it.