9/5/13 Gerardo 59
Tonight’s prayerwalk led to a long conversation with a man named Gerardo, who had some interesting beliefs. I began by explaining about New Life’s prayerwalking focus and asking if he would like any prayers on his behalf. “I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor; now I’m somewhere in the middle and I’m very grateful. I’d rather that you pray for the poor who have never had much of anything” was his answer. This was an honorable response but as we talked and he shared more of his beliefs I could see a pattern of fierce independence from God, ranging from feeling he didn’t need anything from God to the idea that he could do God a favor by helping Him in His battle against Satan. “I don’t want to go to heaven, I want to go to hell and kick Satan’s a__” he said, in total sincerity and with a certain sense of bravado. Like so many people, Gerardo felt he could earn God’s favor by doing enough good deeds to pay for his sins; he just chose to try to do so in an unusual way. I dealt with this in the same way as others – showing him the depth of his sin through exposure to the law, and his need for forgiveness through repentance and faith in Jesus. I exposed his attempt to “pay” for his sins as merely an attempt to bribe the judge and avoid God’s justice, and talked about Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross as God’s perfect expression of both His love and justice. It made a lot of sense to Gerardo, and he said he’d be calling me in a few days. Please pray he does, and in the meantime that the Holy Spirit will help break his independent spirit and help him serve God on God’s terms rather than his own.