“I’m just a stubborn-ass person. I don’t want to change.” said the agnostic that was sitting across from me at the Starbucks on 25th South at the Beach. I presented the gospel and tried to reason with him. I told him that Jesus could change his life. That the anxiety, depression, and un-forgiveness he carried could be issues of the past. It didn’t matter what I said. He didn’t want to change.
I saw him reading earlier that day. He was dressed in Goth-like clothing, holding a “Gospel of Judas” book, and had a smug look about him. I thought to myself, “time to share the gospel.” I approached him and asked about the book he was reading. That question led to a 2 hour conversation about faith, family, and life that culminated in his statement above.
I’ve been on a hot streak lately. In the past 3.5 weeks, I’ve personally led 12 people to Jesus through one on one conversation. It’s been exhilarating. Every time someone repents of the wrongdoing in their life and acknowledges their need for Jesus it makes me want to do a back flip. I’ve never felt so emboldened in my faith. I guess it makes sense. We tend to grow a lot when we go; when we put ourselves in a position to rely on God. What’s been really neat is that during this whole time I’ve been reading the book of Acts in my bible. I love reading about the adventures that Peter, Philip, John, Paul, and others went on as they fulfilled Jesus’ command to go and make disciples. It’s been fascinating to read in the morning about how Paul would lead people to Jesus and then to have someone come to know Christ before my eyes later that afternoon.
The conversation I had with that agnostic was ironic, given the fact that earlier that day I read this verse from the last chapter in Acts:
Go and say to the people; When you hear what I say you will not understand. When you see what I do, you will not comprehend. For the hearts of these people are hardened, and their ears cannot hear, and they have closed their eyes – so their eyes cannot see, and their ears cannot hear, and their hearts cannot understand, and they cannot turn to me and let me heal them.
This scripture above is the Apostle Paul quoting the Prophet Isaiah. At the time Paul was arguing with some Jews about Jesus. They didn’t believe what he said so Paul left the conversation with the quote above. The agnostic I was talking to claimed that there is no one truth. That it’s all a matter of opinion. He didn’t believe what I said either. I was a bit saddened after we parted ways. I wanted to see him give his life over to Jesus, but I didn’t have the ability to save him. I just had to be faithful to deliver the gospel.
I want to encourage you all who read this blog to appeal gently and in love to your friends, family, co-workers, etc. who don’t know Jesus. Don’t get upset or frustrated that they reject our God. I know it’s hard when someone refuses to believe in something you hold so dear. The scriptures are clear though, some people are just hard hearted and don’t want to change. Despite our love ones’ unbelief we must continue to be faithful, bold, and loving as we proclaim the gospel. Remember to pray for them constantly and don’t give up hope.
I’m Harold Dorrell Briscoe. Thanks for reading.