The other day as we were standing on another sidewalk we were trying to engage men as they were wandering about. You would think that perhaps men would ignore us as we were not nearly as interesting as the calls for beer, shows, or signs promising to fulfill any fantasy that one may have. But one night last week we encountered a man who was drawn not to a distraction but to an encounter that only the depths of his heart could understand. As we engaged this man in conversation we were able to spend time talking about issues of the heart, issues that led us there, issues that can be lovingly cared for by Christ. He even responded by saying that there were certain things that we shared that he would reflect on later on. Yet, several times throughout the conversation he said that he respected people of various faiths but that Christ was not for him. “How can I believe in something that I can not see or be explained?” he comments. As soon as he says this I begin to think to myself “Must everything be explained?” Must everything come back to that which mere mortals can fathom and limited knowledge define? We can get into debates with men if we so choose but who wins the argument at the end of the night? We can talk statistics till all of us are blue in the face but does the moral needle move when all is said and done? While we are created with a desire to attain knowledge and created with a brain that can do so much more than that we are capable of experiencing, it all pales in comparison to those moments where our heart is drawn to the One who fashioned it in His tender hands. Are there not moments where we find ourselves in the presence of something so grand and so monumental that we can only step back and resign ourselves to just being awestruck? Is it not possible that when one is in the presence of Christ, a presence that can bring us to unexplainable silence and reverence, that all philosophy, all great thought, all well-known opinion goes right out the window?
I believe it can and I believe it does.
I believe that when one encounters Christ that can be a moment where time stands still and history is written. A moment that caused Peter to not offer silver or gold but a transformation that was life changing for the one on the receiving end of Peter’s hand. A moment that caused a woman beset by illness to seek healing by touching only the hem of the garment of the Son of God. Or perhaps it is the moment when the guard knew that the words that came out of His mouth can bring life to the one many thought was dead. Moments like these are undeniable. Science may not be able to explain it, common knowledge may not know how to define it, but we need no textbook or dictionary to tell us what happened. An encounter took place of epic proportions. It is my prayer that red-light districts would be full of life-changing encounters and less on statistics, less on arguments, and less on debates. I think some times those topics can be distractions and aren’t there enough distractions already that we have to deal with? Sounds, smells, and lights are beckoning for our brief attention. May our prayer be that a man not focuses on what may be around us as we talk but rather he focuses on that which is inside of me – Christ.
End of article.