Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Window Tinting and Quarks

The conversation this morning happened on me so fast that I almost don't remember how! I went in to get the driver's window tinted on my truck. It's been so cold here that it peeled off.

When I walked in to talk to the guy I noticed that he had a very nice 1965 Mustang fastback in the garage. It was his and he told me all about it. It was Caprice blue and he had re-done everything on the car. It was beautiful. He told me his name was Jeff.

Jeff measured my window for the film and as he did he told me that he used to restore Mustangs for a man. His job was to bring them all up to factory specifics. He said he loved doing it and it taught him a lot.

"I loved working on it and it kept my mind on it instead of other things." He laughed when he said this. "You know, it was a distraction. Something to keep my mind busy. That's what it's about you know, just keeping your mind busy while you're here. We're not here for long!"

'Wow,is this really being dropped in my lap like this?' I thought. "That's right, here one minute and gone the next!" I was meeting Allyson at the nursing home when I was finished here and I had prayed earlier that God would bring someone into our paths to talk to. Guess He was already starting!!

"The big question is what next Jeff?"

"Yeah, you got that right! I'll tell you what I think..." Jeff proceeded to tell me that he believed that God created the world with a big bang about 17 billion years ago and man has evolved ever since. He told me that he liked the science of it. He told me he 'liked religion' because we needed to keep that balance of good and bad in us. It made the world go 'round. He told me that he thinks about this a lot.

When I asked if he believed in life after death he told me that he doesn't really like the idea of Hell. He said that he believed that our spirits came back in our kids.

"So, if I have this right you believe that you are a compilation of your ancestors?"

"That's exactly it!" He nodded then went on to tell me that we all had good and bad in us and then when we die we might get to float around 'god'. He proceeded to use familiar words like forgiveness and Heaven. "I don't believe the Bible. I believe in science."

I told him that my Dad and I had just had a conversation yesterday about quarks. We were discussing the possibility of pure sound being able to break quarks down. "The Bible says that God spoke the world into existence." He didn't know this.

I let him finish his thoughts and when he seemed to pause I asked him when he would be good enough to die. He seemed puzzled by the question. "Well, you mentioned a balance between good and evil in us. When are you good enough to die?"


"Jeff are you a good person?" I asked.

"Yeah. I try do do what's right." he said.

"I want to ask you some questions."

"Go ahead, I'll be honest!" he said. My phone was ringing and I saw that it was Allyson. She probably wondered where I was, so I hit the answer button. My plan was to let her hear what was going on so she would know I was going to be late. I was sitting over in a chair away from the truck and Jeff was standing at the truck with the driver's door open. Suddenly a voice said, 'Your call cannot be completed.'

"Whoa!! Was that the voice of God??" Jeff laughed. He seemed a bit shocked by this.

"No just Bluetooth." oops. I took the phone off Bluetooth and dialed her number then held the phone down. She told me later that she heard us and had prayed for us. By the way, it's a good idea to do this and have someone praying for you while you are talking to someone.

After Jeff answered some questions and admitted that he had probably broken each Commandment I asked him how God would judge him..."Guilty or innocent?"

"I'm going straight to Hell!" he said this with a bit of levity but I didn't let him off the hook.

"Yes, you are." I let it soak in.

"Well, we all are!" he said, as if this were some sort of comfort.

"Do you know what God did for us, so we don't have to go there?" Jeff didn't answer, he looked mystified. "Any idea?" He had no idea!

I told him about Jesus dying for us. He told me he thought it would have been much 'smarter' of God to just have the whole cross come out of the ground with Jesus on it and for Jesus to say something like, "I'm dying for you now. OK go ahead and continue." and then for the cross to go back into position in the hole in the ground. hmmm.

"Do you really think that He could not have come off of that Cross in a flash?? Scripture says that Jesus could have called leagues of angels but he didn't. He willingly laid His life down for you. When he was dying he saw your face Jeff. He knew each and every sin you would commit and He paid for it anyway." We talked about repentance and faith in Jesus.

Jeff still had questions and didn't believe that Jesus was without sin. After talking with him a while longer, I gave him the courtroom illustration and asked him if he could leave after his apology to the court. He got it. I talked again about repentance.

"Jeff, do you think this is important?"

"Yes, I do!" he said and stepped back.

"When do you think you'll take care of it? You never know when it's your time to go and if you wait, it may be too late for you!"

"I know... soon!" he said. By now some other people had come into his shop. I gave him a Good Person tract with the payment. He gave me a hug and told me he enjoyed our conversation.

Please pray for Jeff. It seems a bit strange to think that someone might not be familiar with the reason that Jesus came, but that's why we're here-after all!!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Friday, March 19, 2010

Security Pat-down at Washington Reagan

On my return flight from Washington DC, I was randomly selected for a security pat-down. When the ‘small’ TSA gentleman came into the area, I asked if I won something. He said the lottery. He did the pat-down and I told him he had won, too and here’s your Trillion dollars.

He then just walked out of the little glass room waving his trillion dollar tract toward all of his co-workers at TSA. I called him back and said here – give these to your friends and handed him about 20. They started to read them and my friend said very loud – HEY – Read the message on the back! This is very cool he said.
I took a few photos of them and was off to catch my flight.
Pray for them all!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

More Jets - More Opportunities to Spread the Gospel

On my way to DC this week the opportunity to witness was provided right away. The plane (small 50 passenger regional jet) took off fast and leveled off quickly at a fairly low altitude and kind shook a little bit. The girl next to me got a very frightened look and stared over at me. I said this was normal on a small jet and she said she recently developed a fear of dying because some relatives had died recently!

Wow what an opportunity. I told her no one wants to die but we all will one day. I said she needs to make sure she knows where she will go when she dies. She believed in Heaven but not sure about Hell. Of course she said she was a good person and would go to heaven. We went through a few of the Ten Commandments and she admitted she was a sinner. It was then I found out she was a teacher at a Christian school. I gave her the Gospel message and re-confirmed with her that she understood what Jesus really did on the Cross. I am not sure she really understood the concept of repentance and faith.

She also said she used to attend a Presbyterian church and changed recently because the message was non-committal. If she thinks that church is a problem, look at this summary of what I understood her beliefs to be:

I don't think God will send people to Hell if they are good.

God knows whether a person should go to Heaven.

A person who never heard of the Bible could go to Heaven.

The tracts I used were very scary as they talked about Hell – one should say all the good things about Jesus, not anything about Hell.

God would not judge

“Believers” in Jesus are not the only ones who will go to Heaven.

I left some tracts with her and pray she reads them. More importantly I pray she reads the Bible.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Set 'em up Joe.

The nursing home doesn't really seem like a place to meet a guy with this name, but we did. There he was sitting by himself in the courtyard. He wasn't interested in speaking to us at first. He was just trying to take in some sun. It's been pretty chilly here in Florida lately.

Joe told me he wasn't a church-going man, never had been. He told me he was an engineer. We talked about the way that engineers plan things out. They like to know what's coming next. He realized that he didn't know what was coming and he was not prepared, at all.

After answering a few questions, Joe got serious and listened to what the Bible had to say about eternity. While he listened he had a surprised and somewhat shocked look on his face. He learned that although he was indeed destined for Hell, God had made a way of escape. Just as we started to talk about it, Physical Therapy came to get him. I really do hate that!

Pray for Joe and his wife Greta, they are both here.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Go ye into all the world….

It’s a beautiful Saturday in Nice, France. On the plane I had listened to a message from John MacArthur about going into all the world with the Gospel. He talked about a ‘new’ version of faith that teaches it is not necessary and how completely wrong and against scripture this teaching is. Without a preacher who will they hear (Romans 10:14)? The message was inspiring.

I ate lunch at an outdoor café and watched all the people go by. Then it hit me – what about the 400+ tracts I brought on this trip?? Why am I here?

I walked the 2 km back to the hotel, got the tracts and went back out. This time I walked down the quay that was along the Mediterranean Sea since there were dozens of people out walking, skating and riding there. I tried handing out the Million Euro notes and Obama Trillions and only 1 person out of 100 took one. That was enough to discourage me and I stopped and prayed. As usual God gave me the obvious answer – go back to the open air mall where I had lunch.

There was a girl handing out discount coupons to a café at a busy pedestrian intersection. So I stationed myself on the other side of the road. It was interesting that those who took her coupon also took a tract and those who refused her coupon refused the tract as well.

In about 1 hour I had given out the 400+ tracts. Please pray for the souls who received God’s Word!! If you can, notice the boy in the black T shirt with the pentagram.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Another business trip brings witnessing opportunities.

On the flight to Atlanta I was able to talk a little to man next me but he turned away when I asked if he believed in Heaven. Guess he had more important things on his mind......

On the long flight to Dubai I was next to a Crash-Rescue Fireman from Jacksonville who was on his way to Mosul, Iraq to finish a contract job at the Mosul airbase. A lot of civilians are hired to fill non military jobs. When I found an opportunity (he was wearing headphones the whole time) to talk to him, I asked if he saw many deaths then asked where he thought he would go if he died. Though he was not comfortable, we talked a bit more and then he put his headphones back on. I gave him "Why Christianity" and a few hours later we landed. 14 hours from Atlanta to Dubai and that was all I could do-disappointing but maybe enough to reach this twenty something young man.

In Dubai I left some Trillion Dollar Obama tracts around as well as an Arabic tract. At dinner one night with some business associates, two of whom are also brothers in Christ, one led into a conversation about how Jesus Christ loved people and blessed them by many things including turning water to wine at a wedding. The non-Christian next to him said he had ‘grown-up’ Baptist and you could not have any alcohol so he was confused about this idea. I suggested he might have been in a legalistic environment or that maybe it was just his parents protecting him. But before the conversation could go on, the others at the table changed topics quickly. I gave them all some Trillion Dollar tracts. The 2 brothers are literally twin brothers as well as Believers and are Maronite Lebanese Christians.

Why do Muslims need a sign pointing to Mecca?? Even the airplane's map showing where you are has a diagram of the plane and an arrow pointing to Mecca.
Jeremiah 23:24 says God declares, "Do I not fill heaven and earth?". This is in hotel rooms and other locations in Dubai. Pray they find the One True God!

I’m on my way to France so more to come…..

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Room

Got this in an email from a friend-very interesting...

In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I found myself in the room. There were no distinguishing features except for the one wall covered with small index card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which stretched from floor to ceiling and seemingly endless in either direction, had very different headings.

As I drew near the wall of files, the first to catch my attention was one that read "Girls I have liked." I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realize that I recognized the names written on each one. And then without being told, I knew exactly where I was. This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my life. Here were written the actions of my every moment, big and small, in a detail my memory couldn't match. A sense of wonder and curiosity, coupled with horror, stirred within me as I began randomly opening files and exploring their content. Some brought joy and sweet memories; others a sense of shame and regret so intense that I would look over my shoulder to see if anyone was watching.

A file named "Friends" was next to one marked "Friends I have betrayed." The titles ranged from the mundane to the outright weird. "Books I Have Read," "Lies I Have Told," "Comfort I have Given," "Jokes I Have Laughed at."

Some were almost hilarious in their exactness: "Things I've yelled at my brothers." Others I couldn't laugh at: "Things I Have Done in My Anger", "Things I Have Muttered Under My Breath at My Parents." I never ceased to be surprised by the contents. Often there were many more cards than expected. Sometimes fewer than I hoped. I was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of the life I had lived.

Could it be possible that I had the time in my years to fill each of these thousands or even millions of cards? But each card confirmed this truth. Each was written in my own handwriting. Each signed with my signature.

When I pulled out the file marked "TV Shows I have watched," I realized the files grew to contain their contents. The cards were packed tightly and yet after two or three yards, I hadn't found the end of the file. I shut it, shamed, not so much by the quality of shows but more by the vast time I knew that file represented.

When I came to a file marked "Lustful Thoughts," I felt a chill run through my body. I pulled the file out only an inch, not willing to test its size, and drew out a card. I shuddered at its detailed content. I felt sick to think that such a moment had been recorded. An almost animal rage broke on me.

One thought dominated my mind: No one must ever see these cards! No one must ever see this room! I have to destroy them!" In insane frenzy I yanked the file out. Its size didn't matter now. I had to empty it and burn the cards.

But as I took it at one end and began pounding it on the floor, I could not dislodge a single card. I became desperate and pulled out a card, only to find it as strong as steel when I tried to tear it. Defeated and utterly helpless, I returned the file to its slot. Leaning my forehead against the wall, I let out a long, self-pitying sigh.

And then I saw it. The title bore "People I Have Shared the Gospel With." The handle was brighter than those around it, newer, almost unused. I pulled on its handle and a small box not more than three inches long fell into my hands. I could count the cards it contained on one hand.

And then the tears came. I began to weep; sobs so deep they hurt. They started in my stomach and shook through me. I fell on my knees and cried. I cried out of shame, from the overwhelming shame of it all. The rows of file shelves swirled in my tear-filled eyes. No one must ever, ever know of this room. I must lock it up and hide the key. But then as I pushed away the tears, I saw Him.

No, please not Him. Not here. Oh, anyone but Jesus. I watched helplessly as He began to open the files and read the cards. I couldn't bear to watch His response. And in the moments I could bring myself to look at His face, I saw a sorrow deeper than my own. He seemed to intuitively go to the worst boxes.

Why did He have to read every one? Finally He turned and looked at me from across the room. He looked at me with pity in His eyes. But this was a pity that didn't anger me. I dropped my head, covered my face with my hands and began to cry again. He walked over and put His arm around me. He could have said so many things. But He didn't say a word. He just cried with me.

Then He got up and walked back to the wall of files. Starting at one end of the room, He took out a file and, one by one, began to sign His name over mine on each card. "No!" I shouted rushing to Him. All I could find to say was "No, no," as I pulled the card from Him. His name shouldn't be on these cards. But there it was, written in red so rich, so dark, and so alive.

The name of Jesus covered mine. It was written with His blood. He gently took the card back He smiled a sad smile and began to sign the cards. I don't think I'll ever understand how He did it so quickly, but the next instant it seemed I heard Him close the last file and walk back to my side. He placed His hand on my shoulder and said, "It is finished."

I stood up, and He led me out of the room. There was no lock on its door. There were still cards to be written.

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16