Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A Man Named Bear

I talked to the nurse on duty this morning and asked if there was anyone in particular she wanted me to speak with. She turned to me and said, “Well, there is a man, his name is Bear- but he is mad at everyone and everything right now…he’s right here in this room!” She pointed to a room nearby. I quickly asked the Lord to go before me and soften his heart. I looked into the room but didn’t see anyone. I looked back at the nurse and was about to ask if he was gone to therapy when she said, “Oh, he’s in there, he weighs 500 pounds and we haven’t gotten him up yet.” Reassuring myself that my will was in order I tried not to picture myself shredded. I went in and introduced myself to a tattooed mountain with a long braid and beard. He said, “OK, what do you want?” I stared at him and he stared at me. I finally said, “Would you like me to pray with you?” Now, please understand that I NEVER say something like that, and most especially with the information that I had just been given! He stared at me a moment (while I asked for God’s protection- I could not believe what I had just said) and in a very soft voice said, “I would like that very much.” I took his hand in both of mine; it was like holding a 25 pound meatloaf! I asked God to comfort Bear and open his heart to Truth.

He showed me pictures of his snakes with his son, which he had posted on the wall of his room. When asked if he ever attended church, he told me that he had been an altar boy. I asked what he thought happened to us when we died. He said he didn’t know and didn’t believe in Heaven or Hell much anymore. After asking him some questions I discovered he was proud. I opened the Law to him and he admitted guilt but then digressed. He even said at one point, “Hand me my Bible!” I thought …huh? This guy has a Bible in here? I went around to his side table and after removing a stack of papers I discovered a Bible that our ministry gives to people when they accept Christ as Savior. When we give one to someone I write a little statement in the front about why they are receiving it and then ask them to sign it. I opened it up and it was signed by a lady who I knew had died. (Isaiah 55:11) I asked him if he knew her. He said he didn’t. I told him that she had passed away- he turned white. We continued our conversation with him searching for an unknown verse that didn’t exist. Meanwhile, I kept praying that God would give me the words he needed and that the Holy Spirit would break his hard heart. I quoted Ephesians 2:8-9 and told him that he could never be good enough-it was a gift. I let him know that all of his righteous deeds were like filthy rags-the good deeds! I turned to Romans 6:23 and asked him to read it. It was difficult for him to read it but when he finished, he laid the book flat on his stomach and put his head back on his pillow. He let out a big breath and paused, then said, “A big book has just been opened! I feel like I have just been hit in the head with a board…it sure took me long enough to get it!” He said, “Why would He do that?” I told him that God didn’t want him to go to Hell. He knew Bear would need a Savior just like the rest of us. He got the good news of Grace and I asked if he wanted to pray. Bear got choked up and prayed to God, asking for forgiveness and thanking Him for Jesus. He told me that his son had been ‘bugging’ him to come with him to a church called Calvary-that it was really important. I would have loved to see the smile on that young guy’s face when his Dad gave him the news!

No comments: