I had a really interesting ride in the bus this morning. There was just one person in a better mood than I was. An old man in the seat in front of me. He wore a noticeably old hat with a badge in the centre which had a star... I didn't want to eavesdrop on what seemed to be a rather captivating conversation between the old man and the guy seated on his right hand side. He spoke in English, TshiVenda and SePedi interchangeably, a true Limpopo man he was. The topics ranged from agriculture to the 10 Commandments even to history, heritage and culture. The conversation was infectious and soon the lady on the far right woke up to lend an ear to the multilingual and seemingly very interesting old man.
Needless to say, this old man challenged me. He challenged the very core of my being (I kept thinking of the song Killing Me Softly) as he spoke… the reason is though that he was unapologetically Christian with a captivating aura about him. He spoke well and people wanted to listen to him. They laughed and asked questions and laughed some more… oh what I would give to have that old man’s sense of humour and audience connection. The old man was funny till the end, right until my stop came up when I noticed his temperament had changed slightly. See the old man (my hero) knew all but one thing, where he was going… He had no clue where he would disembark.
I honestly learned a lot from that old man. I have always considered myself to be shy. I like to keep to myself and bother nobody. It was the first time I saw that old man in the bus today, but he managed to hold a long conversation with people that I normally just say hello to. The lady seated on my right even said “Vha sa rembuluwa namusi!” (translated “If you don’t repent today!”), this referring to the guy seated closest to the old man.
You see I travel a lot, especially by car and bus... I haven't done the research in this age, but many great ministries of the past including that of our Lord Jesus were made possible by travelling. Whether on foot, on sea, walking on the water, (even teleporting). Acts 8: 39-40 says “When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away. The eunuch never saw him again but went on his way rejoicing. Meanwhile, Philip found himself farther north at the town of Azotus. He preached the Good News there and in every town along the way until he came to Caesarea”.
The old man reminded me of a trip I took some time back. So I found myself driving to Jozi from Polokwane and with 3 hitchhikers, and for 200 km I was fighting within myself asking myself why I wasn't telling them about Jesus. I thought to myself, but I’m shy! what would I say? And the Spirit said "I will give you the words".. eventually I made a joke saying, how can you guys sit in the same car with a prophet of the Lord and not want to know what He has to say to you. The rest of the journey and conversation went the way the Spirit wanted it to, pretty similar to the old man’s conversation.
Please do not undermine or despise the bus you use everyday to work or school, the business flights, the uber rides, carpools... Jesus has placed you exactly where you need to be to spread His gospel. Just like in the case of the old man in the bus, Elijah, Elisha, Philip (who teleported) and many others, there are people whose heavens have been closed up for years. These people’s paths have been set to collide with ours not by chance but by divine connection. All you need to do is open your mouth and begin to speak the words of life. The Bible even assures you that you need not worry when you are brought before the synagogues, and even people in authority (Luke 12: 12) “For at that time the Holy Spirit will teach you what you should say.”
My Peace I give you - Shalom