4/9/14 Rampi, 26
At the coffeshop, looking to initiate some “missional” (Great Commission) conversations along with Adrian, a brother from church, I reached out to two police officers who had stopped in. I identified myself with my church nearby and asked about their beliefs. They did share, a little hesitantly at first, probably a little self conscious in front of each other, but they had a lot in common. Both are lapsed Catholics, and unsure about religion or the Bible. One is studying for a second career as a mortician and knew he needed to be more aware of the spiritual beliefs of others. We did come to the agreement that an afterlife is a reality and definitely worth talking about, but the conversation started to lag a bit. I wasn’t sure if they were interested in continuing, so I began to prepare to go back to my table but one asked “What about you? What do you believe?” Well, I was glad he asked and took the opportunity to share as much of the Gospel as I could until they began to get distracting station chatter on their shoulder radios.
On the way out, Adrian and I stopped to talk to another guy, kind of on the opposite end of the spectrum from the cops, a heavily decorated tattoo artist who called himself “Rampi”. He was much more philosophical and animated in his beliefs, and we had listened for some time, asking good questions that helped him see some of his discrepancies, when he too asked the same question - “What about you? What do you believe?” I love this question, but I have to say that in all my years as a believer no one has directly asked me this unless I first initiated the conversation.
“Breaking the ice” in starting spiritual conversations is hard for us believers - even with the help and boldness given by the Holy Spirit within us; how much more difficult it usually is for non-believers! As a Christian it is only natural that we want to share the good news of Jesus. The Holy Spirit who is sealed within us (Eph. 4:30) compels us to do so, not just out of obedience to the Lord but also out of love for the lost. Like Paul who said "Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!" (1 Cor. 9:16) it is also natural that we will get impatient in waiting for those Spirit-led opportunities that may seem to come our way only rarely. The good news is that since the Holy Spirit lives within us, those "Spirit-led opportunities" can and should come from within us too! Just like Paul as he reasoned "in the marketplace day by day with those who happened to be there" (Acts 17:17) it is both spiritual and biblical to take the initiative when it comes to sharing the good news of salvation with the lost.