Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.Colossians 4:2-6
Awhile back I got a call from a man with a thick Indian accent named Sam from Microsoft Windows Support who said their records showed that my computer is infected by a virus. I said, “Oh no what should I do?” For the next 20 minutes, he took me step-by-step through how to verify all the issues wrong with my computer, each time prompting me to tell him what I saw on my screen.
At about the 30 minute mark, he instructed me to log on to a web service that shares your screen remotely with another person and gave me a private session id to enter so he could finish cleaning my computer. At that point, the following conversation ensued:
Me: “You know, if you accepted Jesus as the ruler of your life, you wouldn’t want a job like this.”
Sam: “Jesus wouldn’t want me to work in technical support?”
Me: “No, Jesus wouldn’t want you stealing other people’s information. In fact, Jesus would give you a heart for helping others like I have been doing the past half an hour.”
Sam: “How have you been helping others?”
Me: “Well, for starters, you haven’t been able to call anyone else during our call.
Sam: “But how do you explain how I know you are Mr. DiMarco and I led you through all those screens on your computer?”
Me: “If you really knew me, you’d know that I only use Macs and I just so happened to have an old Windows computer in an arcade cabinet that’s never connected to the internet. That’s how I gave you the info you sought in order to verify I was falling for your scam.”
Sam: (incredulous) “Do you really think this has helped others?”
Me: “Maybe not, but maybe when your head hits your pillow tonight, you’ll remember that Mr. DiMarco guy is praying for you and that Jesus wants you to surrender your life to him for a far greater purpose; he wants you to receive his love and that will motivate you to love others. Believe or not Sam, this call will be rattling around in the back of your head for a long time.”
Sam: (sticking to his script,) “I’m sorry I couldn’t help you with your virus, can I give you a number to call when you want to finish cleaning your computer?”
Me: “Sam, sin is a virus in all of us but God sent his son to live a perfect life and sacrifice it for all our sins. The virus can be wiped clean if you just cry out to Jesus to save you. He is available 24/7 to answer your call.”
*Click* (Sam hangs up.)
I share this story not to warn about a common scam going around or to puff myself up; countless times I’ve hung up on or been frustrated with telemarketers and scammers. No, I share this story to remind everyone that the gospel is good news for the hacker and the scammer, just like it was and is good news to me every day. The good news is for everybody. And I’m so thankful for that good news that I’m challenged to share that thankfulness with anyone that God puts in my path.
Questions to ponder
What’s the most common scam you run across on your devices or on the phone?
Why do you think it’s so hard for us to think about sharing Jesus when you come across someone that is a scammer?
How can you be more mindful of your thankfulness for the gospel so you can have more opportunities to share about Jesus?