Friday, May 17, 2013

"Closed Circuits........................."

It was about eight-thirty when we stepped outside the rescue mission Wednesday evening, darkness not yet upon us as we crossed the street to walk another block down to where our cars were parked. The four of us were chatting about something or other, carrying our Bibles, most everyone in that area knowing churches visit for nightly services. In other words, we “stuck out like sore thumbs”. It was also evident to us, however, that we had picked up a hitchhiker almost no more than we arrived at that opposite curb. African-American. In his late twenties. His appearance gave no evidence at all of being no more than someone who lived in the vicinity, just a young man who admitted to us that he was, for whatever reason, interested in our talk, eager to let us know he knew Christ. Or did he? When I didn’t immediately confirm his claim, he told me of walking across the Ohio River Bridge one night when a violent thunderstorm suddenly erupted, electrical lightning flashes making it seem as if he was on a battlefield somewhere. Scared to death, he threw his hands up and agreed to repent if God would only make it all stop. A voice, an audible voice, he insisted, answered him “He’s with me!” The words made little sense to me as being any sort of reply to his request, however; and, not getting any input otherwise from the Holy Ghost, I left him with the truth: confirming his salvation wasn’t my job. If he had any doubt at all, he needed to go back to his Maker and find peace about the matter. My advice had nothing to do with such questionable witness as he had provided me, his faith, as stated, based only upon an almost laughable “encounter”; but how many do I know whose eternity rests on no more than a self-constructed theology with little or no life in it? In my book, it seems to me that dogma can be just as deceiving as drama. John wrote in his first epistle that “there are three that bear record in heaven” and “three that bear record in earth”, giving us indication, to say the least, of our assurance needing an on-going affirmation from on high. That doesn’t mean we need to walk in doubt and fear, question this re-connection provided us in Christ; but it does suggest we regularly go back to the well within us for another plunge into the deep……


  1. Yeah, who knows.

    Made me kinda chuckle because it occurred to me that maybe his audible "He's with me." reminds me of the "thought-that-seemed-almost-audible" that I got about my dad when I heard "He's alright." with regards to the dream that I told you about. (Phew, talk about your run-on sentence...) I guess the point for this guy is that the episode stopped him in his tracks and made him rethink things.

    Your advice seems sound to me.

    1. Whether the experience was genuine or not is really not the question, is it? What counts is the "now" and where the experience has brought you to thus far in "the process".....

  2. You make a lot of sense, Jim! We really can't ever know what is in another person's heart, though that verse about the Spirit in one person speaking to the Spirit in another person comes to mind.

  3. There is indeed a "witness" we can get through the Spirit, Annie; but, short of that, we need to walk with caution in our judgment of others...