It was an interesting lunch.
After our worship service a couple of weeks ago, Joy took me (and our friend Devin) out for lunch. She is a big spender so we ended up at McDonalds. At McDonalds we met “Alvin”, we shared lunch with him and heard much of his life’s story.
Alvin grew up in Compton, California and was a gang member. He told us that he had just gotten out of prison four days earlier after serving 22 years for murder. Devin asked him if he “did it” (I wasn’t going to ask… it didn’t seem like polite lunch conversation). He said that he did. He also told us that while in prison he became a follower of Jesus – his sins were forgiven and he was determined to live like a follower of Jesus now that he was out. He was excited to hear about our church, took down all of my information and said that we would see him soon.
I know that people will say most anything that they think you might want to hear (especially when there is the potential of a free Big Mac), but I believed Alvin. I believed that he “did it”…that he repented of his sin and received God’s unconditional and complete forgiveness. I also know that life is going to be hard for Alvin. It’s going to be hard for him to find a job and a place to live. It’s going to be hard for Alvin to make good friends and to make consistently good choices. Will you join me in praying for Alvin?
What a strange little lunch bunch we were at McDonalds! Eating french fries and talking about life, murder, prison and forgiveness. We met after church, but it kind of seems like there was a lot of church going on at McDonalds. We were four people with substantially different backgrounds and experiences, but four people who had experienced God’s unconditional love and forgiveness. We were four people struggling to make good choices, but were just a bit stronger when we left because together we had spent time with our Savior and Guide.
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