I’m at Blackdog…have been for most of the afternoon. I’ve enjoyed reading, a phone call with a good friend and more reading.
Most of this afternoon I have been caught in the grasp of some deep theological debate and found myself contemplating various views and the implications of their logical (and theological) conclusions.
About an hour ago I watched a guy come in. He’s handicapped, permanently on crutches. (that part isn’t relevant to the story…just drawing the picture) He ordered his drink and came to sit in the chair diagonally across from me. I gave the cordial nod and left it at that; continuing on with my reading.
He sat there, alone, for almost an hour. So did I.
I read the whole time about how free will and God’s sovereignty work together… How is someone saved, by their faith in God’s provision or by God’s sovereign election alone? I was into it. I love reading on this stuff. I feel its important, and good exercise in thought. God, after all, hasn’t called us to blind, uninformed, intellectually dismissed faith.
I failed. A guy sat not six feet from me for almost an hour and I couldn’t pry myself away from my religious trappings to speak one single word to him. Now, I’m not assuming anything. I’m not assuming that I have anything great to offer or that this guy even wanted to talk to anyone. I’m not assuming that this guy needed to hear the message of Christ and his love, perhaps he left here thinking he missed an opportunity to share this same hope with me.
Here’s what I’m wondering: Is my experience here today in this coffee shop a metaphor for what we do all too often in the church? Do we get too wrapped up in our religious “junk” to miss the people God has made available for us to extend a hand of grace to? Or is this simply God’s Holy Spirit smacking me around for not being attentive to His prompting?