Nothing unnerves me more than the phone or door bell ringing after I have fallen asleep. I have this feeling of impending doom but it's not always bad as this entry from April 4, 2006, shows! You'll have to read the whole entry to understand the youtube clip!
Please copy and paste!
Since I have been getting up very early to lift weights, I've attempted to get to bed earlier than has been my custom. Last night, I made it by 9:45. I was dead to the world when there was a very loud knocking on my door. After stumbling through a dark apartment, I squinted through the peephole and recognized the gentleman who lives in the apartment across from mine. I opened the door, with the chain stretched taut, asking what he needed. He explained he had just gotten off work and locked his keys in his truck; he couldn't get into his apartment. He asked if I had the office phone number to see if they would let him in. Whoever answered the after-hours line gave a negative answer. My neighbor was distraught- I would have been, too. He still had his unfinished fast food supper in his hand. I suggested we drive to a nearby police substation; I was sure they could help. They couldn't. Because of liability issues, they won't unlock cars for people. I asked if anybody else had a key to his truck- they didn't- but he remembered a friend who had the spare key to his apartment. He made a cell phone connection. I thought his friend was going to bring the key to him but the man's wife had left the house after an argument and they had two small children. Guess what? My new friend and I drove to Missouri City, one of a myriad of communities which conjoin to form Houston. We made the round trip in a half hour. I crawled back into bed at roughly 11:30.
I learned some things about my neighbor in the hour or so we spent together last night. He is from Jamaica and moved into our apartment complex a month ago. Very versatile, he finds employment as a carpenter, a barber, a recorded musician, and writes gospel songs with a reggae flair. In fact, as we returned to our neighborhood, he sang one of his compositions, set to the Mindbender's 1960's hit, 'Groovy Kind Of Love', while keeping time on his construction hardhat. As we unlocked our apartments, he hugged me and said, "I love you, mon!" (My Jamaican emphasis on man.) It had been an interesting hour.
I told my eighth grade students the story today as we studied the Parable of the Persistent Widow. I asked why they thought I drove the guy to Missouri City. One said it was because that is what Jesus would have done. I hope that is true but I have doubts. I relate to my neighbor. Twice in recent weeks, I have locked up my keys, once in my car at night and once in my classroom on a Saturday. I was bailed out both times by friends, praise God. I pressed my kids further, trying to get them to make the connection to the parable. Finally, I told them the truth. I helped because he knocked on the door. It's that simple. He told me he stood five minutes in the hall, debating whether to knock. In Luke 11, Jesus tells about a man knocking on his friend's door in the middle of the night, wanting food to share with visitors. The man inside, even though he complained, left his bed and helped. Jesus says his decision was based on the other man's boldness. The Christ then makes three points about prayer:
1. Ask! .........receive!
3. Knock!.......the door will open!
If he hadn't knocked, I would have slept through the night. I wish I could say I would have still answered the door if I had known the result would be a late night drive to an unknown part of town. We will never know but I am certain of this, from the mouth of Jesus: God wants his children to ask for what we need. And the great thing is, our Father doesn't hit the sack at 9:45!
Applicable quote of the day:
"Knocking on someone's door may not be something you love to do but you love the opportunity of what might be behind the door."
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