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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Kingdom of God (03/12/09)

TITLE: Larry
By Vicki Riggins


“Sir, so don’t you think that there should be a solution for this world-spread problem of sin?” The old man’s disgruntled face showed no interest in Laura’s statement. Laura had tried every avenue of bringing this man back to Christ, but to no avail he’d continue discussing his years of knowledge. Life was all head knowledge to him, no heart knowledge. Laura looked around at her team members scattered on the sidewalks. Skyscrapers towered above them giving little mercy to the high noon sun. It was nearing lunchtime and she was not only physically drained, but emotionally. So many people were roaming the streets of Philadelphia that afternoon, many missing the key to life. She wanted to scream at these people. How on earth could they deny this wonderful God that she served?

For four hours Laura had been handing out tracks and sharing the Gospel to individuals. Satan was working overtime today. She had yet to win one person to Christ. The man standing in front of her was shorter than Sarah, wearing olive and red plaid pants and an olive polo. His hair was disheveled and his breath smelled of stale bear and smoke. At first sight one would have never guessed Henry was a retired lawyer.

After a half an hour of speaking with him Laura knew there would be no progress. Now, nearing one hour she was looking for a way out of this conversation. Ralph, her Open Air Evangelism (OAE) team leader had been listening in on their conversation for several minutes and was about to make an entrance.
“That’s an interesting point you make there,” Ralph interjected. He stuck out his hand for Henry to shake. “What was your name?”
“Henry.” Henry made a cautioned gesture backwards then hesitantly stuck out his hand to return the shake.
“I’m Ralph.” Relief overwhelmed Laura’s body. She was ready to collapse. As Ralph wrapped up the conversation with Henry, Laura walked away to catch a breath of relief. Henry had drilled her on her faith. Jesus was so real to her, but making others understand was a difficult task.

Laura helped pack up the paint board and OAE materials. Her team mates were just as ready for a hearty lunch as she was, but even as fulfilling as lunch sounded, one soul won over for the Kingdom that day would be even more exciting. The group was huddled in a circle awaiting directions from their fearless leader when Laura felt the tap on her shoulder. A taller, curious looking gentleman was looking over her head into the circle.
“What are those?” He pointed to Laura’s hand. Laura looked down at the tracts she clutched in her hand. Smiling tenderly, she turned toward him.
“Would you like me to show you?” The man’s head made an exaggerated motion up and down. “My name is Laura, what’s yours?”
“Larry,” he said.
“It’s nice to meet you, Larry.”

Laura began by explaining how sin came into the world through Adam and Eve and walked Larry through the plan of salvation, explaining how he too could be saved from His sins and have a personal relationship with God. Larry listened intently.
“Have you ever made a decision like this, Larry?” Larry shook his head no and confirmed it with a loud, “NO”. Laura suddenly realized Larry was a man with special needs. She lifted her chin towards heaven and sent a gentle smile to her Lord.
“Larry, would you like to ask Jesus into your heart?” He again nodded a deep yes. “Okay, I’m going to pray and you can repeat after me.” Laura closed her eyes and bowed her head, knowing full well that Larry was still looking at her.
“Dear Jesus, I admit I’m a sinner.” Laura said
“Am sinner,” Larry repeated. Laura slowly repeated the sinner’s prayer as Larry followed. Once finished she opened her eyes to a new man.
“The angels in heaven are rejoicing that you will be with Jesus one day.” She told him. Larry gave her a banana wide smile. His eyes glimmered with the hope of Jesus. Laura handed him a new testament Bible and gave him an address to a nearby evangelical church. He thanked her then wrapped her in an awkward hug. “It was nice meeting you Larry. I will be praying for you as you start this new journey.” Larry grasped Laura’s hand once more then turned to walk away. Laura watched as he walked down the street and crossed to the other side never once taking his eyes off her.
“Thank you Lord,” Laura whispered to the heavens, “one more for your kingdom!”

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Marty Wellington 03/22/09
Very sweet story. I loved how God answered Laura about saving one soul that day. If you want to PM me, I can share more with you concerning structure. Blessings~