The temperature dropped overnight. We were now looking at a high of 5° Fahrenheit, and I was scheduled to help a friend do man in the street interviews for a Christmas series his church was planning—he would ask the questions and I would run the camera. The phone rang. I was hoping he was calling to cancel, but no such luck. An hour later we were flagging down people on street corners and in the store fronts of our community.

It was uncomfortable approaching strangers, and the frigid temperature outside probably didn’t help the foot traffic that day. But, after two hours, we had interviewed close to a dozen people, both believers and unbelievers alike. To my surprise, only one person declined to be interviewed, and the rest were not only willing to talk, but seemed to enjoy it.

One of the questions we asked was, “If there is a God, and you could ask him one question, and you were guaranteed an answer, what would you ask?” One man replied, “I would ask him about my deceased parents. Where are they, and are they ok?” I thought to myself, “That’s a great question, and one the Church might be able to answer.”

As we wrapped for the day, I loaded my camera gear into my car, and thought to myself, “This is where the Church belongs!” Not that we forsake gathering together, resting in Word and Sacrament, but that we take our message to those in the street. We have been given answers to important questions, and many who have lost their way are ready to talk… and more importantly, willing to listen. 

It is easy to stay inside, where it is comfortable and warm, but it is outside where we will find the lost. Let us go to them—for it is to the lost that we have been sent.

Rev. Troy Tysdal is Director of Communications and Prayer for the CLB, and serves as editor in chief of Faith & Fellowship magazine.

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