Saturday, June 26, 2004

Pick me, I'm free

It's late Friday night, well I guess it's actually early Saturday morning at this point. What an interesting Friday it was. It went something like this...

So I must admit that I am a cellphone enthusiast. I'm not admitting that I talk on my cell phone all the time, only admitting that I like to have a nice phone. So Cingular informed me that I have been with them almost 5 years and have never been given a free phone. Thanks Cingular for telling me now. I order the Nokia 3300, we are talking about MP3 player, recorder, games, phone, and more. Yes! FEDEX attempted delivery and I was not home, aww man. So I tracked them down and found out that I could pick my phone up in Greenville, so off I went.

On the way to Greenville, I find a man on the side of the road, "Jump in, where ya goin?" He says..."I need to go to Spartanburg.". Cool, so off we went, his name is Danny. Danny works near the same place I work and had been hitch-hiking to get back home. So we're driving along and I realize that I still need to pick up my cell phone. Danny says he doesn't mind if I stop by FEDEX, so we go to FEDEX. Well the driver is not back with my phone, so we head out to Spartanburg to take Danny home. We had interesting conversation, talked about work, what he does, where he is from, fishing, nuclear reactors, cars, and bass fish. We finally make it to his house and it's pouring rain, has been all day. He gets out, grabs his stuff, and tells me thank- you. Here is the hard part. I want to witness to him, but fear creeps over my body and I sorta go numb. Ahhh shrug off fear, hell is real, so is heaven. :) So I explain to Danny that I cannot just give him a ride, I have to tell him something else way more important.

Me: Danny, what do you think happens when you die?
Danny: (stares intently at me, almost waiting for me to answer my own question)
Me: What would you like to happen?
Danny: I Guess I want to go to heaven.
Me: Me too, how do you think you get there?
Danny: I don't know how.
Me: Let me ask you three questions...We then went on to talk about the 10 Commandments and sin, Have you ever lied before? He says yes, What does that make you, he says liar, and so on so on. Then we get to Jesus, I get to explain to him that because of our sin, Jesus was sent by God to be our sacrifice, to pay a price for all the bad things we do and think. He understood. He smiled. I showed him a tract that says..."GODISNOWHERE" He says....God is nowhere. I say, read again, He says, GOD IS NOW HERE. He asks if he can keep it, I say of course. I could see care in his eyes and he knew I loved him because I wasn't afraid to tell him about Jesus. He then went on to tell me about his family and how he wanted them to come to church and find Jesus too. I dropped him off, we smiled, he said thanks again and I left. Wow, what a feeling, but oh wait, the day is not over.

So my flesh kicks in after this and all I can think about is this cell phone. I have 30 minutes to get to FEDEX before they close. So I try to make it when all of the sudden BOOM, my tire explodes after hitting something on the interstate, a brand new set of tires too. It knocks me to the side of the road and yes, I have a huge flat. So I run back down the road in the rain and try to find the object that flattened my tire. Nothing there. I look further, nothing! It's vanished! Well I run back to my Jeep and get out my jack. Now of course, the jack is too small for my car because it has over-sized tires. I watch cars pass, and pass, and some beep, some people say mean things. Lexus rolls, probably some preachers roll by, maybe some deacons, nobody stops. Finally a man named Ezeal stops to help me. A black man around the age of 40 I would say. He is so nice, he runs over with a hydro jack and has my car off the ground in no time. I change the tire and bam, it's done. I asked him if he was a believer (inside, I knew he was). He says, YES! He told me the that he passed me but the Lord told him to go back and help, so he listened. A really great guy, put the jack back in his car, told him I would see him in heaven and away he went.

Well as I'm finishing up with my tire, (hole the size of a football in it with a completely shattered rim). Something else happens. A truck comes screeching into the emergency lane about 25 feet behind me. I'm like, wow, what in the world. I walk back to check on this man and he jumps out his brand new truck screaming. (I am carrying a tire iron at this point) He curses me out pretty much and continues to scream profanity. He has a flat and has hit the same piece of "something" I hit. I explain to him that I hit the same thing and he then screams back at me that his truck his brand new with a 1100 miles. Now I must stop and be honest, I really felt like jacking him upside the head with my tire iron for cursing at me, but I know that is not Christ-like and well I didn't :). So I walk back to my Jeep and finish up. As I'm finishing, he comes back and apologizes to me and I accept his apology. No big deal, it's raining and we both have flat tires. So I go back and look again for this "something" in the road, I find nothing. I return to his truck and help him change his tire. I notice a funny looking sticker on the back of his brand new truck, looks like a flag with a heart in the middle of it. I discerned something funny about him. I asked about the sticker, he says, "you don't want to know what it means." Well it turns out the sticker stands for..."I'm a man who likes men who wear levis and leather." Thank the Lord I didn't have on my levis and leather, whew, thanks God. He then precedes to think I'm 32 years old. Humbled. As I'm putting his old tire back under his car, I notice blood dripping from his hands, and then realize the blood is probably all over the tool I am using. He looks at me and says..."Oh don't worry, I'm HIV negative" Well ya know, that's good news to know. He then goes to tell me that he does not have sex with men. Why this information was volunteered to me, I'm not sure. I call personal foul and TMI! Well of course I try to swing the conversation to the Lord. He then tells me that he is a christian but doesn't believer that homosexuality is wrong. He even grabs his Bible out the front of his truck and shows me his cross on his rear view mirror. This man was quite interesting. His father was a pastor and died when he was 10. His father never knew about his preferences. We talked a lil more about the Lord and I felt the Lord lead me away from him and I told him bye and to be careful on his ride to ATL.

As soon as I get on the road, there is another car in front of me smoking. I get out, see this guy that happens to be an aquaintence of mine's cousin, funny. I hit the road and head home.

So I learned that no matter what plans I have in my heart, the Lord is going to place me and any other believer where He wants you. I think about all the conversations today and all the people I met, it all started by picking up one hitch-hiker. I challenge whoever reads this to make yourself available to the Lord and don't just pray for opportunities, TAKE THEM. They are all over the place and there is not enough time in the day to get to them all, but try. I'm so glad we can be labeled and identified with Christ, we were all once a bunch of hitch-hikers that the Lord, in His grace, picked us up. To Him we owe ALL.

1 comment:

Holly said...

Justin!!!!!!!! No fair. I know I comment this same thing all the time but I wanna pick up hitch hikers. You get to do the coolest stuff. God gave you one of the most exciting callings. I saw Chris at Allison Cullums wedding. It would have been cool to see you too. But then, we do get to spend eternity together so I shouldnt be complaining huh. I love Focus on the Family. I LOVE IT. And I LOVE GOD. And I LOVE YOU TOO in that glad we are friends and brother and sister in the body of Christ type way! No matter if ever there is a hitch hiker/car story that is too long to type just call me and tell me about it. Thanks and goodbye.