He may Die Tomorrow
My mind is in a flutter, I’m half listening to the radio and to the voice of a DJ, whom I dislike. With my cat on my lap, I’ve drawn the computer keyboard closer and can’t get up to turn the radio off. I am frustrated at times like this. The moments slip by with indecision and lack of passion, as I look at a blank screen and search for the first words to express my profound musings.
I have so many stories that would bring glory to God, but I’m uncertain, in fact, I haven’t the faintest idea what subject I’m supposed to write about. Lord, I put my fingers to the key board hoping you will guide them to fill in the space with something profound. Jesus told his disciples, to just open their mouths and expect God to give them words to speak. Somehow, that has only worked for me on those rare occasions when he pressed me to witness to someone for him, which takes me back to when…
I went to the local post office. In the parking lot I passed a man who had parked his van next to my car, and limped painfully in the same direction I was going. I stood at the counter when he entered and engaged the second clerk in a conversation I couldn’t help overhearing. “I’m on my way to the V.A. hospital,” he said too loudly for my ears.
“I don’t think I’ll be coming home this time, it’s gangrene.”
I glanced at him irritably, did he have to inform the whole world that he was about to die of gangrene? I, for one, didn’t want to know about it. The Lord had been dealing with me since I first laid eyes on him, making me aware of his presence, watching him. He looked ill. The clerk fumbled with my stamps and asked if I wanted something else while I stood, handing him the money. I just wanted to get out of there. I drowned out the conversation the other two men were having but, God said…”Tell him!”
I sighed; I wriggled inwardly, thinking how ridiculous it would sound to the stranger if I approached him with the fact that he was a sinner, and needed to get saved if he thought he was going to die. It had been a long time since I’d been under so strong a conviction to witness to someone and I wasn’t prepared--I couldn’t remember the verses in Scripture, or how to present the Roman’s Road of salvation. The pressure to approach the man grew against my determination to hurry out of there and get to my car, before he left the building. I would be long gone before he got to his van.
I stood by my car fidgeting with the keys when I heard him walk behind me, his lame foot scraping the pavement. The keys slipped out of my sweaty hands and fell to the ground. When I retrieved them and straightened up, I looked directly into his face, my heart pounding dreadfully now I was confronted with him.
“Excuse me, I would like to talk to you,” I said knowing if I didn’t speak up now, I would forever live with deep regret. I knew I had a divine appointment it was my turn to do God’s bidding. “Please understand, I wouldn’t do this—I mean talk to a stranger, but I couldn’t help overhearing that you have gangrene.”
He looked at me, nodded his head slightly and just stood there while I took heart and opened my mouth. That was when the Lord filled it with the whole gospel of salvation. At times like that, I have no recollection of the things I say, I only feel the power of God surge through me, and it is an awesome feeling. While I was still talking, I realized he was sizing me up, undressing me with his eyes.
I felt a slow angry burn coming over me. Had I been mistaken? I had not. God had made his will known to me at times with the same voice and conviction, though I hadn’t openly witnessed to anyone for years. I called it my soul winning burnout that started years ago when I stopped knocking on doors and writing letters, offending family, friends and strangers.
Ignoring the man's obvious misinterpretation of my intentions, I proceeded to give him a gospel tract in hopes that he would reread the message of salvation I tried in vain to present to him. He thanked me and drove off. On the spare wheel at the rear of his van I read: He that dies with the most toys wins.
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