Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Southern Lights & Baptist homosexuals

Every year one of our family traditions is going to see Southern Lights. It is a drive through Christmas light display at the Horse Park. There are 3 miles of over 1 million lights on more than 100 displays. It's so large that setup begins in September and final tear down is complete in February. Once you drive through the display there is an exotic petting zoo, pony rides, craft sellers, model train room and doll house display, and miniature train ride. It's fun for the entire family.

One of the most exciting places is the exotic petting zoo. There are animals there that you truly have never seen before. But, there are also familiar ones such as llamas and camels. Once inside I handed out Christmas cash.

This is the attendant reading the tract my son gave him. He read it several times. I did not have a chance to talk with him because of his job, the people, and a phone call he received. I just pray that the tract does its job and leave the rest to God.

They were such a hit people were reading them instead of looking at the exotic animals!

Forget the porcupines and emus, this is great stuff!

I handed out the Christmas cash by saying simply, "Did you get your Christmas Cash?" or "Hey here's a million- it's your part of the billion dollar bailout." Every single person took one, smiled, laughed, or engaged in conversation. I didn't get a single rejection. Don't be afraid! Try it while handing them out with a smile.

And then it happened- a man in a blue jacket asked, "What is it?" I told him, "It's a Gospel tract." He said, "I already got one." Then he turned to his friend and said, "Didn't I get one in my X-box at Best Buy or something?" His friend said, "No I think you got one in a Christmas Card." My mind was racing. I thought, "Could he have gotten a tract I shoved in a box when I was at Best Buy?!" That would be just wild!

I asked, "Do you have a religious background?" He said, "Yes, Baptist. But, I'm not a Christian." I asked, "Have you ever thought about what happens when you die?" He said, "No. I do NOT want to think about that." Gently, but with conviction I said, "But, you never know when you're going to die and 10 out of 10 of us are going to die." He still said he didn't like to think about it. His female companion piped in, "Did you hear what she said? She just gave you a real statistic." I guess it must have been a topic of conversation between them.

I asked him if he thought he was good enough to go to heaven? He said that he hoped so. I asked if he'd like to find out. He hesitated and I coaxed him by saying, "Come on, it's not difficult." He said OK and I asked, "Have you ever told a lie?" I started a dialogue with him and had only gotten through 2 commandments when his friend in the black jacket came over and told him they were leaving.

I wasn't going to let the fish get away so I walked with him and kept talking. The guy in the black jacket came up to me as the other walked away and said, "Look, we're homosexuals and my dad is a Baptist minister. I know how the Christian community feels about us." My heart broke. I just wanted to cry. What he doesn't understand is that God will not send him to hell just for being a homosexual. He was a lawbreaker way before he engaged in a lifestyle of homosexuality. If we break just ONE of God's commandments we are guilty of breaking His moral law. God doesn't hold homosexuality above all other sin and count it 10 times worse than all other sins, contrary to what the Rev. Fred Phelps and his hate mongers may bark at people.

I told him, "Look, it's wrong if people who call themselves Christians scream at you that your going to hell because you are homosexual. That's wrong. I said you've broken God's law not just because you're homosexual. Christ died on the cross for your sins and you don't have to go to hell. You need to re..." And then he said, "I've got to go," and walked off.

I pray that the tract will do its job powered by the conviction of the Holy Spirit. We do nobody a favor by not telling them the truth, but I believe we do more harm than good if the truth is not spoken in LOVE. You MUST care for people you speak to. Please don't be guilty of pointing some sanctimonious finger at someone because you believe their sin is worse than yours. You only invite judgement upon yourself when you do that and you taint the Gospel.

I handed out more tracts and just kept these two young men close to my heart in prayer. I often feel unbelievable sadness when handing a tract to someone who rejects it. If they face God on judgement day, having never humbled themselves and repented of their sins and placed their faith in Jesus, God will replay the conversation that I had with them before their eyes. They will have no excuse as God casts them into hell and that is a horrible thought. Pray before and after all your witnessing encounters that God's good and perfect will be worked in their lives.

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