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December 28, 2007

He asked me about the "turning the other cheek business" and I was thankful for the Click sermon I heard a month ago. I explained how turning the other cheek implies that you have to turn your head back around and look the person hitting you in the eye. Moreover, in the context in which the Bible was written, asking someone to hit you on the other cheek means that they have to give you a backhanded slap--a sign of disgrace in most Middle Eastern cultures. In order to do that, the person trying to hit you basically has to defile themselves. The whole process of turning the other cheek is not supposed to be a parable about abandoning your dignity.

The cab driver thanked me for putting things into context before asking me a question I feared would arise,

"So what happened to you? How come you're not on the Kool-Aid?"

I wasn't sure if I should be flattered or ashamed.

"Well, I just think that if someone came up to me preaching judgment and telling me that I was destined for hell, I'd probably be pretty offended. Faith is an individual experience and I know that you haven't had the same life experiences that I have. Why would I treat you as if you had?"

He seemed content with that answer, and I guess to a degree, I was too. After all, a witness, by definition, is someone who tells what they have seen or experienced. So, I told him about the restless nights, the tears, and the frustration. I told him that it took years to be able to forgive my father and genuinely pray for him. I told him that the reason I was OK now; the reason I could feel pity and not anger; the reason that I want to see my father in heaven is because I found God.

As I counted out a tip at the Northwest ticket counter a few minutes later, I asked him what he thought about providential meetings.

"I don't believe in that providence stuff," he told me.

"That's OK," I said. "Just think about it."

Two Adventist girls in the same cab on the same day in a blizzard when most cabs weren't running. One man searching for a way to find forgiveness. Two different opportunities to hear about the same Savior. Just think about how far God is going to go to save Him--to save all of us.

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