The elderly man wheeled down the hallway of the nursing home on his last week there. (Don’t worry, he wasn’t graduating. He was there temporarily, for rehabilitation.) When he heard someone speak his name, he raised his eyes slowly and met the eyes of an attractive blonde-haired, blue-eyed woman.
“This is your last week here, and I may not see you again,” she said. “Can I visit you later?” With little hesitation, he invited her to stop by his room.
This was not their first encounter. Every time she visited her mother, she made it a point to visit and chat with him, too. She had prayed for an opportunity to talk with him about Jesus, and now was her opportunity.
As they sat, she opened her Bible and shared her understanding of Jesus. He pulled out his Bible and told her he was “one of those Jehovah Witnesses.”
“You believe Jesus was God, don’t you?” he asked as he peered into her blue eyes. She nodded in affirmation. He said, “I believe he was an angel.” He was straightforward about what he believed about Jesus, and she was gracious as she listened. She shared with him her understanding of salvation through Jesus.
At one point, the conversation drew a crowd of other residents, who wheeled into the room and listened. She continued to share, encouraging others in the room who believed what the Gospel writer said about Jesus in John 1. She answered his challenging questions as well as she could. At the conclusion of the conversation, he did not confess Jesus as Lord, but a conversation about Jesus was started.
We are not called to convert, but to converse. Jesus summed up life with two commands: Love God, and love others. You don’t really love others if you hold back information that could save their life. You also don’t love others by reading a tract when you can’t remember their name. Relational discipleship begins with relational evangelism. Relationship takes time and compassion.
When people used to ask me where I got my blue eyes, I would say, “Walmart!” The truth is I got them from my mother. I am thankful I have a mom who would notice an elderly gentleman at the nursing home and tell him about Jesus. Her model serves as a foundation for the ministry I am involved in today.
Christian mothers, you are raising a generation of potential missionaries. Model for them a life that notices others and is willing to tell others the greatest story known to man. Happy Mother’s Day!