One out of three times, at our regular 'get togethers', we always end up chatting about the possibilities of life after death and God (or in his case 'god'). And so this last time it was one of those 'get togethers'. We chatted about religion, Christianity and God. As much as I try and persuade him with some really intellectual 'fact', nothing seems to move him. I share my own testimony of how Jesus found me, how Jesus changed my life and given me life. I tell of the miracles I've seen and the healings I have witnessed. I share scripture from the Bible. I plead my case in loving and gentle ways every time we get onto these topics and yet there is always this imaginary wall that my words bounce off, right back to me. I can sell just about anything to anyone, but somehow to one of my dearest friends, I can't seem to influence him to follow my best friend and Heavenly Father. No matter now sincerely I try.
But then...this last time, something happened. I sensed a crack in that wall. It may just be a slight one, but a crack nonetheless. I was straight and firm with him. "Dude, think about it." I said. "The very fact that I am sharing this with you, must show you my love for you. I'm like a guy who was trapped on the top floor of a burning building. I found the way out. I ran down and got free. I look up and see my friends and family in that same building, engulfed in flames, and I know I need to shout out to them the way out. I may be a lunatic and I may be coo-coo in my head. But the fact is, I believe this stuff with all my heart. I believe that one day we all will die. I believe that there will be a judgement before God. And only those who have received Jesus, follow Jesus and believe in Jesus will go to heaven. Hell will be real for many well intentioned good people who rejected God. The fact I'm sharing this with you must show you that you're important to me and that I love you enough to show you the way out. There is an escape route and its not in you trying to live a good life or being religious. It's you believing in a savior."
His eyes flinched and his whole countenance changed as he soaked up my words. He could see I wasn't trying to 'sign' him up to my country club i.e. get him to be a member at a church or convert him to some religious unpractical practice. But that I was really trying to share an escape route from an eventual fiery hell.
No, he never fell to his knees and cried out to God to save him. He never collapsed in repentance and asked Jesus to remove his sins. I wish he had. But that didn't happen. He finished his drink. He smiled. And he said 'Are you paying or is it my turn?' as he gestured for the waitress to bring the bill. He never said anything then or since. But I know something happened. I saw the wince. I saw his eyes. The wall cracked for sure.
My mandate from my Father is to love. Love ecstatically. Love without measure. Love till I can't love any more. Converting is HIS job. Mine is to love. And so I do. Everyone as much as I can. Just love. Changing hearts and convincing people of Gods love and existence is God's part. And I'm not about to take over His job.
How's your loving going???