Thursday, October 30, 2008

Awkward for more than one reason

What's the weirdest place you've ever shared the Gospel? I just did wearing only my underwear and a sheet.

After today's experience, I'm convinced I can witness to anyone under any condition! As a last resort (to a neck and shoulder injury from a car accident over 15 years ago) I tried massage therapy. I began a few months ago and I am now almost pain free for the first time since 1994.

I have been trying to witness to my massage therapist since I began. Do you know how hard it is to boldly proclaim the Gospel while using the law to get them to incriminate themselves while they have the sweet spot of your trapezius in a Vulcan death grip while you are wearing only a sheet?!

The first few times I went I couldn't say a word other than, "Yow! Yeah, I think you found the spot!"

Since I'm almost cured now, I am able to speak much easier during my session. Her husband is manager of a movie theatre. We talked about new movies and she brought up Fireproof! Which made her bring up child stars and how they usually don't turn out but she heard that Kirk Cameron guy turned out OK. I said, "Yeah I heard he used to be an atheist!" She said, "No way!" I said according to him he used to be, but now...

And so began the weirdest place that I have ever shared the Gospel. I wish I could say that it was an easy encounter, but it wasn't. Besides the fact that it was awkward for more than the previously stated reasons, I was witnessing to her while face down speaking through a cloth covered donut hole.

She used to be Catholic but said that there were some doctrines that she didn't agree with in the Catholic Church. I asked her what and she said that when she actually read the Bible, she discovered that Purgatory didn't exist. I thought it was going to be smooth sailing from there, but it only got worse.

She currently goes to an Episcopal Church and believes that if anyone is in heaven then it is CERTAINLY Mother Teresa! She said that she read somewhere that Mother Teresa said that she didn't feel God's presence for more than 40 years but she believed by faith. I tried to bring it back to the fact that she may have never confessed her sin or repented and used John Wesley's life as an example how he was a missionary in the U.S. but saw the faith of the Moravians and realized he didn't have what they had.

When asked if she thought she would go to heaven, she said she hoped so. But she wasn't really sure. She believes that hell is really like darkness and separation from God more than fire or anything. It sounded more like the Mormon belief in "Outer Darkness" with a hint of Emergent Church aroma wafting into her description of hell.

When I took her through the law, it was fine. She easily saw and admitted that she was a law breaker. I had her stand before God on judgment day. Would He find her innocent or guilty? She wouldn't answer! She uncharacteristically took off down a rabbit trail. She said that hopefully she would go to heaven but could never admit her guilt. I finally said that based on her confession and God's standard, she would be guilty.

That's when I found out that she doesn't really believe that we can really know how we'll end up. She was very postmodern in her belief that all roads lead to God...no one can say that one person is absolutely right... etc. I used every example that I knew and she just maintained that she tries to be really good and hopes that will be taken into account. I didn't mince words, I told her Jesus was morally perfect...we're not...we can't be good enough...used examples from my life.

I gave her Law and Grace. I could have sworn I heard an audible ricochet bounce around the room as my words bounced right off of her heart. I am not even certain that I got the seed planted because I felt like my hoe handle broke on the hard soil of her heart. I REALLY reasoned with her. Good grief! Even the telemarketer guy who didn't own a Bible or know where he'd go had the ability to reason!

Our conversation slowed for awhile and then she said, "On to lighter subjects!" And we talked about other things. There were only 10 minutes left. I just tried to be obedient to share the Gospel, but I walked out of there feeling like I wasn't even sure if anything got through. I know God brings the harvest, but like I said, I'm uncertain if the seed even got out of the package and into the ground.

One thing I'm certain of, if someone isn't sure if they're going to heaven and only hopes so, they are probably not saved and there is still work to be done.

1 comment:

BrianB. said...

The strangest place for me is at my gym. The other day as I was sitting in the 160 degree dry sauna about to pass out and I felt the Holy Spirit convict me to witness.

Now I have to admit I was having a little battle in my mind with the Lord. It was just so hot, but in the end I was obedient and had a short but great conversation about God's law and the gospel.

So I guess I can now say that when witnessing to someone the other day, I had them sweating during the witnessing encounter :)

You have a great blog.