Friday, June 12, 2009

Back in the swing of things

The St Pete Pride festival is in two weeks, so please be praying as I try to set up something to reach out to the people at the parade on Saturday, June 27. Hostile environment? Only if they think you hate them. Last year, we freely gave them waters and Gatorades and tracts right behind them. They couldn't argue with the love, even if they didn't like the message. This year, I am not using the Cyanide tracts. In fact, I don't know what tracts I'm going to use. I have an idea for some rainbow themed tracts, but they may have to wait until next year.

For those of you who don't know about my job, I work with We do all kinds of promotional products for businesses, and I am a sales rep. It is a commission job, the kind I begged the Lord not to give me, but the products are so necessary for businesses that it isn't that hard to sell (business cards, mainly, but we do a lot of stuff, like T-shirts, ink pens, etc.). So I have made some money already.

The best part of this job is that the owner is a Christian, and he has absolutely no problem with me handing out Gospel tracts while I'm getting business for him. He says, "It's a Christian company, so..." Sweet.

I have about 1300 tracts right now, and I am budgeting about 100 per day, so that I don't run out too quickly. Once I start making more money, which is quite likely, I'll be able to regularly buy a monthly set. My rent will be late this month, but it will get paid from my own pocket, which is a welcome change. I do appreciate all those who have helped me up to this point, but it is so nice to be earning my own keep again.

I stopped calling on businesses yesterday because I had run out of tracts and I was running low on water. So I was walking back to where I had locked up my bicycle (it gets me to the spot, but it's way too cumbersome to drag around) and I saw these two guys sitting at the bus stop, and I was bummed because I didn't have tracts for them. The Lord asked me, "Do you need them?"

Nope! "Hey, how are you guys doing today? Have you guys ever taken the Good Person Test?"

It was a black guy (BG) and a white guy (WG), both way older than me, but they weren't in anyway put off by my approach.

WG: No, never heard of it.

BG: The what?

ME: The Good Person Test. It's a three question test to see if you are a good person.

WG: Oh, I know I'm a lousy person.

ME: How do you know that?

WG: Well, just go ahead.

ME: Question number one: Have you ever told a lie?

BG and WG: Yes.

ME: What does that make you if you tell a lie?

BG and WG: A liar.

ME: Question number two: have you ever stolen anything?

BG and WG: Yes, I have.

ME: What does that make you if you steal?

BG and WG: A thief. (Yes, they did say all these things in unison.)

ME: Right, because Steelers are from Pittsburgh (they didn't laugh). Question number three: Have you ever hated anyone?

WG: Yes.

BG: Hated anyone? No, I've never done that.

ME: Have you ever cursed at someone or called someone mean names?

BG: Yes, but that's not the same as hating them.

ME: Is that treating them with love?

BG: Is what treating them with love?

ME: When you call someone mean names, is that treating them with love?

BG: Uh, yeah--tough love!

ME: (laughing) Well, I'm not going to argue with you about that. We both know the truth. What does it make you if you hate someone?

WG: A hater.

ME: Nope, that's the ghetto answer. (He did laugh.)

BG: [What kind of answer are you looking for?]

ME: Well, if you tell a lie, you are a liar; if you steal, you're a thief; so, if you hate someone, you're a what?

BG: I don't know...a sinner?

ME: Well, what kind of a sinner? A liar is a sinner, a thief is a sinner. [They gave up.] A murderer.

WG: What? Whoa.

BG: Well, see, I've never hated anybody.

ME: Ah, but Jesus said that if you call someone mean names, you get the same punishment as a murderer on Judgment Day. And that's Matthew chapter 5, verses 21-22, so you can look it up. And you should do that, because you should never just listen to someone say that something is in the Bible, because there are so many liars in the world, as we have already established. [Actually, I don't know if we did, but I think it is a consensus.]

They let me give them the Gospel, and I emphasized the difference that Christ makes in one's life, especially as pertains to righteousness, noting that sin and Jesus are in opposite directions. We parted ways peaceably, and they had something to think about.

Thanks for your prayers.

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