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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Coming Out Of The Closet

Today God was trying to get me to come out of the closet. I failed miserably.

As I was waiting for the bus, someone came up to me and asked me if I could give him a dollar. He gave me the whole "I'll pay you back the next time I see you, I get paid tomorrow, do you always ride this bus?" thing. Maybe it's true, or maybe not, but I believe the Word says to give when people ask of you, so I gave him a dollar without hesitation. I even asked him if he had the extra quarter it would take to ride the bus (he said yes, he had it). The Holy Spirit told me to speak to the guy about Jesus. I did not.

I got on the bus and it was fairly full, so I sat down in the front seats next to a guy. This particular bus runs past the V.A. clinic, and quite often veterans ride it to get to the clinic, sometimes to catch the free shuttle from there to the V.A. hospital in Oklahoma City for more involved treatment (I mentioned one guy I met who does that in this post). The guy I was sitting next to asked the bus driver if he would let him off right across the street from the hospital (the bus stop is maybe 20 yards or so away, so that would save him some steps, especially on a rainy day). I felt impressed that I could find out what was wrong with him and pray for him. But I did not do so. When it started raining harder just before we let him off, I also considered giving him my umbrella so he would be a little dryer crossing the street. I did not, and it's not even an expensive umbrella.

Shortly after we let the guy off at the clinic, the bus driver commented, to nobody in particular, that the rain was really picking up. I had the thought that he would probably be appreciative if I stopped on the way off the bus and prayed for his safety on the job today. But I did not do that.

Strangely, I feel a sense of missed opportunities this morning, but I do not feel like a failure and I do not feel any sense of "condemnation" over it. I'm naturally a very reserved person, not the type at all to strike up conversations with strangers outside of maybe a little joke about something going on around us or something like that, but not anything heavy. But I've been reading about Jesus and how He went around meddling in people's lives, healing their illnesses, casting out their demons, teaching them about His Kingdom, and I know I need to be like that. But it's a learning process for me. This morning I definitely learned what not to do. Besides, the day's not over! I may yet get some chances to share some part of God's good news with someone. I'm not planning on keeping my Christianity in the closet forever! I've cracked the door open, and I've inadvertently shed some light into the darkness outside. Soon another opportunity will come and I will fling open the door and the light of Jesus will shine on everything around me! Holy Spirit, don't give up on me... teach me how to live my life as Jesus would live it!

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