Monday, October 4, 2010

My Friend: The man with no hope

I met a man a couple of months ago who had no hope. I have wracked my brain trying to remember his name but am not able to recall it. He is about 60, grey hair, beard, very intelligent, drives an old beat up Suburban from the late 70's but has an engine in it that would smoke a Vett. I know this because I saw it and talked to him about his Suburban at length.
My friend, who I met at the state park on Camano Island, was putting his fishing gear in the back when I asked him about the tires on his Suburban. You see this Suburban was not just any Suburban. This Suburban was old. I mean real old. There were more holes around the fender wells from rust than there were not. The interior was rotted and the cloth thing that is on the ceiling of the Suburban was hanging down in several spots. That is why I asked him about his tires. His tires were racing tires. The back tires were easily 4 inches wider than normal. They just looked fast. Fast like the cars you see when you go to a drag race.
My friend's eyes lit up. He immediately started telling me about his "truck". He told me how he had been fixing it up for several years now. He told me how he had to rebuild the engine 2x because he had blown something up in it (Im not a mechanic otherwise I might be able to remember what blew). He told me how he had to do something to the transmission because the transmission he had in it would not be able to keep up with the engine that was now in it.
I asked him if he had raced anyone and he just smiled and said "no". When I asked him if he was crazy he just smiled and once again said "no". So I asked him if anyone had ever come up beside him who had a fast car and if he had revved the engine trying to get them to race. He said that he hadnt but that he did have some "punk kid" fly up on his back bumper on the interstate one time and that it had "pissed" him off. He said that when the kid got up beside him as he was trying to pass, my friend said that he looked at the kid, made eye contact and punched it. All that was left was a cloud of dust. He said the kid tried to keep up with him but that he blew the doors of the "little Jap" car. Several minutes later after he had slowed down to a safer speed, the kid pulled up beside him. Laughing, my friend said that the kids eyes were as big as saucers. He said the kid never knew what hit him.
As we talked I was able to ask him some probing questions about his life. I found out that his wife, who was almost 20 years his senior, had recently passed. She was his world. She was his only friend. He was a loner. He said that he didnt know how to make friends. He was lost with out her.
Since he had retired about 5 years ago from Microsoft due to medical reasons (my friends health was not so good) he said that he only had time to think about her. He said that was why he was out fishing. He had gone and bought brand new fishing equipment so that he would make himself get out of his house so that he could stop thinking about his wife and try to leave his loneliness for a time.
I tried to express my concern for him. I asked him if he would like to meet at another time so that we could fish together. He replied "no... I dont like fishing. I think that Ill just go home. My dog needs me".
I asked him about his dog.
He told me that he loved his dog. He said with a faint grin that his dog loved it when he came home. Drifting off he added, "when my dog is gone... Ill have nothing. Ya when my dog is gone, I will too".
Knowing what he meant I still asked him what he was talking about.
With little strength he looked at the ground and said, "when my dog dies I will have no reason to go on living. When he dies I will take my life. Nothing can take away my loneliness."
I knew that I had little time to share Jesus with him so I started asking him what he understood about the Bible, who Jesus was etc...

He knew.

He knew all the right answers.

However he didnt know Jesus and he didnt want to know Him.

My friend opened his car door and climbed in.

I tried to keep the conversation going.

He didnt want to talk.

I asked him to wait just a minute while I grabbed something out of my car.

I grabbed a tract that was in the glove box.

It was my last chance to...

He kindly waited.

I handed it to him and asked him again if I could meet him at that park in the future so that we could go fishing together.

He never answered. He smiled and drove off...

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