He threw his head back and let out a guttural, jolly laugh. What brought about his fit of humor? Me.
Janna was the first to meet Harry yesterday as we scrounged for a seat at a local coffee shop. We happened to sit in the two seats that sat adjacent to Harry. Janna struck up a normal Christmas conversation with him that led into what she was reading, the Bible. Harry lifted his eyebrows and said nothing more than, "Oh."
By the time I sat down, Harry was informing Janna and I how ridiculous the Bible and Christianity are.
As Janna and Harry discussed, I sat and prayed, 'Ok God, what do you want me to say? What can I say to convince this guy?' And do you know what I heard... nothing. So I sat and listened to Harry crucify my love and my relationship with God.
Finally, I just asked him, "Harry, what do you believe?" And that was all he needed to start into a hour long discourse on his belief in reincarnation, aliens and that every person decides what they are going to be, whether male or female, whether rich or poor, whether in the US or Africa. He told us that it was all for the experience. And at the end of your life, YOU would weigh out all the goods and bads and decide what your next life would be in order to mature your soul.
As we continued to probe, we found out that Harry had chosen this belief because of one specific book that made the most logical sense to him 30 years ago and he had lived by it ever since.
He told us of an aunt he had who was an "evangelical" and when asked why her views were right opposed to Buddhism or Islam she siad, "Just because they are wrong."
As we continued to converse I said, "I think it is important to keep learning... I love to learn about what other people believe... to hear about where they came from and how they got here. My prayer for you is that you would continue to search for truth." And he said to me, "I have done the hard work, I have searched and I know this is the only truth."
This same man who told me how narrow minded Christians are was himself just as narrow-minded. That's the problem, we are all narrow-minded. We all believe we have truth. But have you bothered to ask the hard questions, to search what you believe and why you believe it.
I am reading this book called, "They Love Jesus but they Hate the Church" by Dan Kimball. He talks about all the things that people in this generation find unbelievable about the church and you know what? Out of the 6 issues that Dan addresses in his book, Harry brought up 5 in the hour and a half long conversation we had. People are searching for truth, but are we willing to love, dialogue and point them to the Truth or do we just want to argue?
"You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all your heart." -Jer 29:13. Harry thought my relationship with God was cause for laughter, but I know that as I have searched for God, he has revealed his love, his power, and his truth. I praise God for the light he brought into my life through his Son, Jesus Christ and I can only pray that he draws Harry to His Light.