10/6/13 Maria about 40
Sharing our faith in public places can bless more than just the people we talk to. At a coffeeshop I asked two men, a father and his adult son, if they would be willing to give me their opinion on an interesting question – “What do you think happens after this life?” The father answered “I think about it all the time, but no one has come back from the dead to tell us, so I guess I’ll just have to wait to find out!”. We talked a little further, but I could tell he was just being polite and that his son wanted no conversation of this kind for himself or his father, so I graciously bowed out before wearing out my welcome and becoming obnoxious. However, in the booth behind the son was a Latino woman named Maria who was interested in talking more about it, so I sat down to a long conversation with her, sharing the hard truths and good news of the Gospel. I’m fairly sure the son could hear us even though half of it our conversation was in Spanish. I believe my moving on to talk to someone who was interested and spending some quality time with them had an important unspoken message for these two men, similar to Paul’s actions when rejected by the Jews in Acts 18: “When they opposed Paul and became abusive, he shook out his clothes in protest and said to them, “Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent of it. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.” Of course, my unspoken message wasn’t so dramatic, but it might have been something like this: “It’s not about you. There are plenty of people who would like to hear and respond to the Gospel, so don’t expect the Lord to wait until you decide to listen. Take advantage of the chance to learn about God now, while you still have the opportunity, because it won’t be there forever.” Maybe they didn’t think this way at all, I have no idea. All I know is that, in contrast to the two men, Maria was ready to listen, and I believe the Lord has blessed her for it, and possibly others who were within earshot as well.