“Is there someone who can wrap these flowers?” I asked the grocery-store clerk as I paid for my bouquet of bright pink carnations nestled in baby’s breath.
“I’ll call someone to floral,” he said.
As I waited, I lifted the flowers to my nose and smelled their spicy-sweet fragrance. Soon a young man, who told me he was about to graduate from high school, arrived at the floral counter and pulled out pink tissue paper and cellophane. “May I ask the occasion for the flowers?” he inquired as he wrapped my bouquet.
“It’s for my granddaughter.” I smiled. “She did a great job at her piano recital today.”
“Nice,” he said. “I used to play the drums at Cedar Park.”
“Cedar Park Church?” I asked.
“Yeah,” he said, “but I don’t go there any more.”
“Where do you go now?” I asked, looking at his name badge.
“Nowhere,” he replied, wrapping the bouquet.
“Oh, I’m sorry to hear that, Jared.” I paused then added, “Jesus is coming back soon, and it’s important to be ready.” I smiled. “I’m listening for the trumpet sound.”
“I’m an agnostic. So I don’t believe like that.” Jared pulled out a white ribbon to tie around the bouquet.
“Just keep reading the Bible,” I said. “Do you have one?”
“No, but I can borrow my mom’s if I need one.”
As we talked more, I learned his mother was a Christian, but he didn’t know much about his father. When I mentioned I would rather err believing in God than not believing, he replied, “Well, if I’m wrong, I’ll find out and pay for it.” He glanced toward the checkout clerk and said, “Looks like I’m needed.”
“Thanks for wrapping my bouquet,” I said, wrapping up the conversation. “You did a great job.” I looked at the white ribbon tied around the bouquet and wished I could tie up our conversation with a happy ending for Jared.
As I walked to the car, I remembered verses in Jude: “Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them (Jude 22-23 NIV).
I joined my waiting husband in the car and prayed aloud, “Lord, draw Jared’s heart to Jesus. May he seek and find You.”
I continue to pray that God will use my conversation to stir Jared’s thinking and draw him to Jesus, so he will know that God exists and wants a relationship with him now and for eternity.
“If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me ” (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT).
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Acts 2:21 NIV).
About Lydia Harris
Lydia E. Harris is happily married to Milt, her sweetheart for 48 years. She has two married children, five grandkids, and is the author of a Bible study, "Preparing My Heart for Grandparenting" (AMG Publishers, 2010 release). She's also a tea enthusiast and writes the column "A Cup of Tea with Lydia."