“So they called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard’” (Acts 4:18-20, ESV).
Obion was asking me about the health of a fellow patient with whom he had spent a great deal of time in the waiting room. They had become friends waiting for their treatments and Obion knew that Johnson did not have long to live.
“We all have an appointment with the Big Man someday,” he said.
I responded, “For us Christians, that’s not a bad thing. In fact, your friend Johnson is quite happy that he is going to heaven soon.”
“I know he is and I agree with him,” he replied. “Did you know that Johnson brought me back? I was far away from believing in God and he brought me back and made me believe again.”
Long conversations in the waiting room between two sick men: one who did not believe there was a God, the other who was spontaneous and intentional with his faith in Christ. Many thought Johnson obnoxious with his open testimony, with Obion and with every doctor and patient he met. However, Obion, the skeptic, knew that this man loved him and saw his sincerity and Obion will now live forever because he listened.
I called Johnson at home to ask if I might give Obion his phone number.
“Of course you can.”
He was not even aware until I told him that he had brought Obion back to the Lord.
“Well that’s the best news I’ve heard all day,” he said.
I could not help but think, “Where, O God, is my boldness to speak openly for you?
If I need to be obnoxious at times to bear witness for you, let me be so. If I need to lose respect at times so that you may be glorified, let it be so.