A special treat! This is a guest post by my lovely and feisty wife Kay. She writes, “Names were changedâ€¦ for obvious reasons.”
My doorbell rang and I opened the door to find Doug. He was an older gentleman, well dressed and carrying a briefcase.
“Hello, I’m with the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Have you ever read the Bible?”
Ummmâ€¦ Okay. I should be nice to this guy. After all he has a sweet manner and it’s cold out here. Besides, it can’t be fun getting doors slammed in your face all the time.
Her assumption is that I will quietly read along with her, I guess. Oh boy.
“Sure, I read the Bible regularly but I would love to hear what you have to say. How long have you been a believer?”
“Since the 90’s.”
Oh. Not a lifer. Interesting.
“So what made you convert?”
“I grew up Southern Baptist. And all they taught us was that God kills everyone and we are going to hell. But that’s not how it is at all. God doesn’t kill us. We do that ourselves. You see what the world around us is like.”
Ooohâ€¦ The guy has a story. Even more interesting.
“Would you like to come in? It’s cold out here.”
“Sure, let me go get a lady I am working with and maybe she could talk with you too.”
Tracy has that Look. You know the one. It says, “I have the Truth and you donâ€™t. But by the time I leave here you will have it whether you want it or not.”
Tracy whips out a book, opens it to the first chapter, and hands it to me. Itâ€™s called What Does the Bible REALLY Teach? Then she takes out a copy for herself and begins to read to me from it. Her assumption is that I will quietly read along with her, I guess. Oh boy.
I decide to interject a bit of common hospitality.
“Would you like some tea?”
“No thank you. Please look at page 12. Have you ever heard of the Lord’s Prayer? Itâ€™s in Matthew 6:9-13. Will you read it out-loud please?”
Wait! What? Okay. Itâ€™s time to take control of this situation.
“Soâ€¦ How long have you been a Jehovahâ€™s Witness?”
“Over 30 years. Now as you can see from the second paragraph on page 26â€¦”
Okay, that failed. Try again. I dig into my mental bag of tricks and pull out a question that has served me well in the past. After all, everyone likes to be asked how they feel, right?
“So, how do you feel about what you just read to me?”
“Itâ€™s not what I feel, itâ€™s fact. The Bible says so.”
Wow! I canâ€™t even formulate a response. But thatâ€™s okay because Tracy doesnâ€™t seem to need one.
“Letâ€™s move on to page 32 nowâ€¦”
Wait, is she wrapping up?
“Next time I come, you will need to make sure you have your Bible and I will be bringing a student of mine with me. When can we schedule our next visit?”
You have got to be kidding! Try never?!?
“Hmmâ€¦ I would love to speak with you again.” (Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire) “But Iâ€™m not really interested in having a book read to me that I can read myself. You are welcome to bring a friend but if you do I will ask her about her thoughts and feelings. How her faith has changed her. How relying on God has strengthened her. If you’re okay with that I would be delighted to schedule another time to get together.” (Toothy grin)
Tracy was gone in less than five minutes. She didnâ€™t even make another appointment.
Iâ€™m hurtâ€¦ No, Iâ€™m not. I just let someone into my home and they didnâ€™t even have the common decency to acknowledge I exist by accepting a cup of tea. Feels so good to be just another project on someoneâ€™s list doesnâ€™t it?
Shame that Doug stopped talking. I would have made him a proper cup of coffee, and dug out the cookies too.
What did you think? Leave comments for Kay below!
Related posts: Conversation with JWs
Photo by Kay Reid (copyright)