Almost two years ago, while Richard was still in training in Texas and I was still living and working in Pennsylvania, both of us were having a bit of a battle with wrong numbers. In anticipation of moving to Colorado, we updated our phones and switched area codes so that we could have local numbers.
Most of the wrong numbers I got were for someone named Eric who seemed to have his information posted on just about every tech job website out there. One night, however, after I'd gone to bed and hadn't been asleep very long, my phone jolted me out of my sweet slumber.
“Come on, pick up, pick up!” someone was saying excitedly as I said hello. And then—“Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, ...”
As I sat there in bed, listening to a group of people on the other end sing Happy Birthday to me a good two months before I was actually due to turn another year older, I couldn't help but be amused by the total wrongness of the number.
“Happy birthday, Melody!” everyone called out when they finished singing.
“Uh, well, thank you, but it's not my birthday,” I said. “I think you guys have the wrong number!” They apologized, I said that was ok, and that was the end of that. I climbed back under the covers and got comfy again.
Just a minute or two later, my phone rang again—another wrong number after ten at night?? I answered, and it was one of the guys who was in the birthday singing group. He apologized again for the impromptu song, explained Melody was a relative of his, and then started asking me some strange questions.
“Let me ask you something,” he said. “If you stole something, what does that make you?”
“Well... a thief,” I replied.
“And if you told a lie, what would that make you?”
“A liar.” I had an inkling as to where this was going, but I played along just to see where he was taking it. He continued by asking me if I had ever lied or stolen, and honestly, who can say they never have? Of course I said yes, I had lied and stolen at some point in my life.
“What if when you got to the gates of heaven, God asks why he should let you in if you were a thief and a liar? What would you say?” he asked me. There's what I was looking for!
“Well, I'd tell him that he sent his only son to die for me, so all my sins have already been taken away, and he promised me eternal life,” was my immediate reply. I think I caught him a little off guard!
“So you're already a believer!” he said. I wish I could remember how things ended past that, but I don't. We hung up, and I went back to bed, mind spinning on what was definitely the weirdest wrong number I'd ever gotten.
I don't recall whether he ever told me his name; I don't know what denomination he was, but he had undoubtedly had practice talking to strangers about God. Purposely redialing a wrong number to share the faith!
We should be so bold as to seize such an opportunity to spread the word. I can't exactly advocate randomly dialing numbers, but when was the last time you were so intentional in making known your beliefs?
“Go on up to a high mountain,
O Zion, herald of good news;
lift up your voice with strength,
O Jerusalem, herald of good news;
lift it up, fear not;
say to the cities of Judah,
'Behold your God!'” (Isaiah 40:9)
Get up and be bold about your faith!
See you in the round!
*Scripture quotations are from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.