“Hey, how ya’ doing?”
Looking up from the TV, he said, “I’ve been better.”
It wasn’t a stellar beginning of a conversation, but it was enough to keep things going. He was in the hospital for drinking too much. When I asked what motivated him to magnify his intake of alcohol, he blandly replied, “That’s what I do.”
For the next 15 minutes or so we talked about a wide variety of subjects as I tried to find something that was even a little positive in his life. But it didn’t happen. His marriage had failed. His kids hated him. Every boss he ever worked for expected too much of him. His girlfriend stole his money. And, to top things off, he would be getting out of the hospital in a day or two with no place to go.
“What are you going to do when you get out of here?”
“Live in the streets. It can be done.”
Not really knowing what else to say, I asked, “And what about 'God stuff'. Think there’s anything to it?”
“I don’t know. He might be there, and he might not. I guess that’s the safe way to look at it.”
“Isn’t that like saying, ‘I’ve got $10 million dollars for you, but I’m not going to tell you where it is’?”
“That would stink, man.”
“Don’t you think that if there’s a chance God is out there, it might be worth it to find out about him?”
“Don’t preach to me. I won’t listen.” And then he ended the conversation, actually rather politely, with the words, “I’ve got to use the bathroom.”
Walking out, I turned to him and said, “I’m sorry.”
He looked surprised.
“This has been really depressing. I’m sorry."
He laughed. And life went on for him.
As I walked down the sterile white corridor, I couldn’t help but think of the old saying, “Only one life—it will soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.”
Join us this Saturday evening (6:00 pm) or Sunday morning (10:00 am) as we focus on and celebrate the life worth living…for eternity.