Mother Teresa, Billy Graham…and My New Friend, Bob

I had the opportunity to write a post for our church’s blog yesterday.  It’s a fun story, so I wanted to share it here too!

As we began the Becoming a Contagious Christian series, I thought a lot about what a contagious Christian looks like. I wanted to be able to identify people who are contagious Christians.

A few big names stand out.  Mother Teresa, Billy Graham…and then there’s my new friend, Bob.

I met Bob at Starbucks yesterday.  I was out of town, so before I headed home, I wanted to get a coffee and read a little bit.  I got my coffee and then found a really comfortable seat near the front door.  I sat down and was about to get out my book, when the guy sitting next to me asked what day it was.  I told him it was Sunday the 2nd, and he seemed all flustered and said he had somehow lost a day.  He thought it was Saturday.  I thought the guy must have been a little nutty.  (Turns out he had worked all day on Saturday and just got mixed up in his days.)  I can’t remember the next thing he said, but we spent the next hour and a half talking about our lives, God and faith.  Here’s a little bit of Bob’s story:

Bob grew up in Lake Tahoe and did not know about Jesus until he was 22.  He was working for the MGM Grand in Reno and had a friend who had just gone to a Billy Graham crusade who accepted Christ there.  This friend started reading his Bible during his breaks, and was a noticeably changed man.  After watching a movie one night that mentioned God, Bob couldn’t get God off his mind and wanted to learn more.  So he turned to his new Christian friend.  His friend said he didn’t really know all that much since he was a new Christian, but he gave Bob his Bible and a paper explaining how to become a Christian.  Bob went home, read the Bible, wept bitterly for a long time that night, and accepted Christ as his savior.

This started a lifelong love of scripture.  Bob loves the Word of God.  He has gone through countless really hard things in his life (the deaths of 2 children, the loss of a marriage, cancer, etc.), but he clings to the Word of God and his faith.

Bob has friends that he is praying will come to know Christ, and he talks to his friends about God.  He was going to a Super Bowl party last night at the house of one of his friends that he prays for, and he was hoping they would be able to talk more about God.

His non-Christian friends call him “Jesus crazy”.  They know that he loves them unconditionally despite some of the crazy things they do.  And they love him even though he is “Jesus crazy”.

Bob and I were both blown away by the conversation we had just had.  I don’t know Bob’s last name, and I’ll probably never see him again, but he touched my life.  And I had the chance to touch his life and encourage him.  As we stood up to leave, we gave each other a big hug and went our own way.

I am thankful that I got to meet Bob.  I am encouraged by his boldness to show the world his love for God.  I’m glad I decided to sit in that chair at Starbucks.

Who do you know that you would call a Contagious Christian?

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