rick & 1j13
Friday, April 09, 2004
Good Friday.

Jesus died. I saw it in Gibson's THE PASSION. I realized what it meant, to some extent, in January '82. I've grown in that realization and understanding, to some extent, over the past twenty-two years. And it still amazes me that He died.

Last night, we were passing out fliers for tonight's screening of another recent movie, THE GOSPEL OF JOHN. We drove the CWO bus to a local mall, and hopped off to barnstorm the parking lot with fliers for every windshield wiper in sight. Until a lady cussed me out (here's Carlos' rendition).

I reached down to lift the wiper blade of a little black Honda (maybe - might've been another make/model). As I did, I placed a flier there and heard a clicking sound, just knowing that a car alarm was about to go off. It did - the first time I'd heard one go off in the five weeks or so that we've been doing this. My compatriots looked my way, pointed and laughed at my "luck". Of course, I pumped my hands and "raised the roof", feeling embarrassed more than anything else and moving on to the next car.

But this was her car, and she was not impressed. Are you trying to break into my $#%^ car?!? My only response was No, ma'am and Sorry, ma'am. She was younger than me, and had her six- or seven-yr-old son with her. She was irate, saying something about how every time she has her @%&* car detailed someone comes along and does this and messes up the #$@%% wiper blades. Pastor tried to calm things, explaining what was going on but getting an earful, too. I apologized again, and we got back on the bus - everyone else had finished that side of the mall.

She flagged down security, telling the guard that two guys had tried to break into her car. He followed our bus to the other side of the mall, told us what the charges were - I'm big, but just one guy, thanks much; and Carlos was over thirty yards away if he was the "second perp" - and told us that we couldn't pass out these fliers without proper authorization from the mall office. His partner pulled up, and a county sheriff's deputy pulled up - either she called 9-1-1 or it was procedural. Anyway, she went on her way, being told that her charge was flimsy and we were looking at "tampering with a vehicle" at best. The guards and deputy pretty much shrugged and laughed the episode off, and we handed them fliers to attend our presentation tonight. Whew.

And it still amazes me that He died. For God's glory, completing His character traits of forgiveness and mercy. For us, giving life a newness and freshness that we had abandoned at the Garden.

He died for me. He died for her and for her son, and even for Carlos. He died for all of us passing out fliers, and for all the people who checked out the fliers, throwing them away or making a note of the event. I am not upset, though I am a bit quiet and stressed still over the situation. But I understand her, a little I hope. Maybe she had a bad day - I don't know. But if your car is that important, you stand up against the invaders. If your privacy and your schedule is important, it ticks you off when someone jostles things.

I found out later that I hadn't triggered the alarm, that someone had seen her desperately pushing the panic button on her keyless remote. From the time she saw me, I was the enemy - I was invading her space, whatever that might have been in her world. I walk through the house at night, checking all the locks and windows, doing the same thing - protecting what's important. To that extent, I understand.

Jesus died for her, and because of that I invaded her space, placing a flier on her newly-detailed windshield. I know that in the Lord's will, she's really rejecting Him, and I have no problem with that. I just can't shake the nag that there might've been another way. I'd rather Jesus invade her space. I've got the feeling He would've done a better job.
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