Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come into him and dine with him, and he with Me. Revelation 3:20
“God is a Gentleman, Gary! He stands at your heart’s door and knocks. You have to let Him in!”
These were some of the lasts words I shared with my ‘class boy’, my school friend Gary, yesterday, a few hours before he passed away in a tragic accident.
He called in an inebriated voice from his local pool haunt, to invite himself over for Sunday breakfast. He would do that every so often and my standard reply would be, “Gary, I’m single and I don’t invite men over to my house!” We’d laugh about it and he’d say “You’re so religious, you should marry Jesus” or to my remaining celibate: “What a waste of a good body Fi” – he knew just what to say to rile me up!
He said he would buy lunch, call his female friend and bring her along to visit me. The conversation quickly turned spiritual when I asked him when he was going to come to church with me. I’d invited him on many occasions and he always had an excuse because he was a business man and worked long hours. I was so proud of his achievements because although he left school in our Matric year, he had accomplished so much and had a thriving business. He was a Trainer and Assessor on Safety to heavy duty truck drivers. Reading his summary of himself on his LinkedIn Profile, I thought how ironic that he died overtaking a slow moving truck, hitting into an on-coming vehicle on the bike he’d bought his daughter last week for her seventeenth birthday, just a few hundred meters from where I lived.
Words from his summary: “I am passionate about developing our heavy duty drivers in South Africa. I feel there is a real need in this sector considering the high Fatality and Injury figures in the recent years. Someone has to be pro-active and initiate an intervention to up our driver skills and start changing mindsets. We cannot just accept this as if we won’t become a statistic ourselves. its carnage out there and we need to make it a safer environment for all of us and our Families.”
During the conversation we were having he said that he believed God was in everything and in him too. I said that was a humanistic view and not what the Bible teaches. I said God stands at the door of your heart and knocks and waits to be let in, that he doesn’t barge in uninvited. We grappled with this concept for a while and went onto whether the Old Testament was still relevant for us in this day and age. I told him that it was, because it testifies of Jesus and that the prophets spoke of His coming, that I loved Jesus even more because when I read the Old Testament, He becomes more REAL in my life and that I cannot deny His existence.
We covered topics about the Law of Love – The Ten Commandments (the first four, Love for God and the next six, Love for Man) – and he began to see that it was the Mosaic Law with all its restrictions that were done away with when Jesus Christ became the Sacrificial Lamb and died for our sins. (Matthew 5:17-19, Romans 13:8-10, Galatians 5:14, James 2:8-18, John 1:29) We spoke about Grace and how without the Law, Grace cannot exist – they co-exist. We are not saved by our works but by God’s Grace and if we love Him we will keep His commandments. That Grace was there for pardon when we sinned against a Loving God.
(John14:15, Deuteronomy 10:13, Romans7:12) We spoke about the Fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23). I told him about the change of Sabbath worship by Constantine’s changing of the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday in 321 AD. (Daniel 7:25)
I walked around my house, phone in one hand, Bible and pen in the other, gesticulating like an ‘old-time-religion Preacher, writing down texts I would refer him to later. He simmered down and was accepting of what he had heard, almost like he was hearing the knocking and responding to it. “I’ll see you later girl,” he said…
An hour later, this was our Whatsapp conversation:
Gary 10:47: Thanks for the sermon this morning love : *
Fi 10:48: : D pleasure Gary
Gary 10:49: Love you too : *
Fi 10:49: I love you, God loves you. Take care and be good <3
Gary 10:50: He sent me a thumbs-up emoticon.
My last and final earthly conversation with my friend whose friendship spanned 33 years. A Bible Study to someone with seven hours more to live! His friend messaged around midnight and I went to the family to share comfort, my conversation with Gary, God’s word and prayer. I hope to continue the conversation with him when we reach Glory Land. My hope is that he answered Christ’s knocking that morning.
Prayer: God, I come to you in the name of Jesus Christ who died for me and gave himself for me (Galatians 2:20). Forgive me for my sins. Help me to be a conduit of Your Love. I pray that my friends will heed the voice of the Holy Spirit and let Jesus into their hearts. He’s standing there knocking right now because time is so short. Thank you for the breath of life that we still have, unmerited time that you give us to make a decision to follow you. Save us for Your Kingdom. Amen
Yours in faith,