This past Friday night we went to Mill Avenue with our new King of Pop Micheal Jackson tracks. Now we really never know what to expect, when we go witnessing, especially to Mill Avenue. Usually something outrageous happens as you could probably tell by our blog… but I don’t think any of of foresaw what this night had in store for us.
David and Walter didn’t waste any time and quickly got into some conversations about Jesus. Christy, Jason and myself were handing out the MJ tracks, which were a huge hit. In the meantime Jonathan was up on the mic sharing the gospel as a thugish looking gentleman came up to the question mic. Troubled, he began asking questions about what the bible says about guilt. Jonathan answered with a Piper quote saying,” guilt is to the soul what pain is to the body.” Essentially, leading to the main point that sin defiles us and causes us to feel shame. However, God desires to cleanse us from our sin( 1 John 1:9). Jonathan, eventually got off the mic and began talking to the guy one to one on the side. The overall vibe of the thug was “I’m a bad man and want to get my life back together.” Jonathan continued to share the gospel, talk about forgiveness and then the two prayed together.
The thug was not done yet. Jonathan could tell he wanted to get something more off his chest. He ended up admitting to killing two people. Jonathan remained calm and tried to get more information only to find out that no one knew and he was never caught. Although he felt guilt the man didn’t seem to understand what this truly entailed. “So, you are a murderer?” Jonathan expressed calmly, trying to get him to understand. Then it clicked. Jonathan went through what murderers deserve; which is death. Taking ones life, condemns and requires judgment. Again he went back to the gospel and expressed that Jesus was not a murderer but he was murdered. “He provided blood on the cross in order that you may be forgiven”(Eph 1:7) Jonathan explained to him.
Now bear in mind that while killing someone is considered a heinous crime according to the law. But, acording to Matt 5 :21-22, if you have ever been angry with anyone you have committed murder in your heart. So we are no different then this man. None the less, when we receive information like that it is serious and we do not operate on matters of confidentiality. It is a sin, much like any other sin that may receive forgiveness, but it is also a legal matter. Jonathan, continued to remain calm but was of course shocked as a million questions were racing through his mind. ” What do I do next? What would be wise? Do I build a relationship with this man? Encourage him to turn himself in? Do I go straight to the police right now? etc,.
There was really not choice at this point, we had to turn him in. This is where it gets good, haha…After praying, Jonathan went to the police and told them the news. Unfazed the cop said ” People say that all the time, he was probably just drunk.” Jonathan assured him this was no joking matter. So, the cops went and handcuff him, but let him go as the gentleman naturally denied the whole thing. Which goes back to the confidentiality matter. He assumed he could confide in Jonathan and his case would then be dismissed. Now we understand you can not just arrest someone on the side of the road; it was Jon’s word against the other mans, but seriously? Now, we are earnestly grateful for the Tempe cops, but umm really?They couldn’t have investigated further, fingerprints, looked at records of an un-caught double homicide back in July, SOMETHING? Wonderful, now the man knows we turned him in but he didn’t get arrested. We prayed for protection and then flagged down two bike cops. We told them the story and simply asked them to stick around for a bit in case our safety became threatened. They gladly agreed but not even forty seconds later the cops had vanished. Seriously? Monstrous job on side of the police tonight!
A bit alarmed we felt it would be wise to wrap up the night. Jonathan went over to pray with a young guy named Alex who I had spent a while of the night conversing with. He prayed for Alex and when he opened his eyes AHHHHHH, the thug was standing right in front of his face. I looked over and my heart nearly jumped out of my chest. I quickly looked around to identify the nearest cop as well as plugged 911 into my phone and was ready to hit the call button at any moment. The man looking very nervous, as he rocked back in forth trying to quietly intimidate Jonathan. “That’s messed up man!” The guy uttered with disappointment. Jonathan conveyed to the man that he was simply doing what was right. He informed him that before he was saved he had committed theft and had turned himself in. He said it would all work out for good and he ought to do the right thing. Jonathan walked away as I nervously I tugged on Walter, to get the heck in the car immediately! Unaware of what was going on Walter took a great interest in organizing the car properly. “Guys I don’t think there is room for all of us. Emily, want me to just take you first and come back? Jon how did you fit this sign in the car?” Walter inquired. “WALTER. Make it work. Everyone get in the car.” Jonathan responded. We all squished in and enlightened Walter; “THAT’S THE GUY!” Phhheeewww, we made it home safe! Please pray for our further protection!
Have a great Thanksgiving all! If anyone has a good idea for a busy black Friday location to witness at, please comment!