11/07/2006. 742. This auto-repair shop has a waiting room separate from the front area, which makes it quiet and private. I sat down, and there was one of those "Judge So-and-So" courtroom shows on the TV. Two elderly African-American ladies soon joined me, and we watched two quickie trials of people done wrong by their friends and relatives, presided over by the wise-cracking judge.
I had brought along a book-bag with Books of Mormon in it because there are ethnic restaurants within walking distance of the repair shop, and I expected the repairs to go past lunch.
I was disgusted with the junk on the TV. I noticed there was a VCR player and DVD player built into the TV, and remembered that I had some church DVD's in my book-bag.
The two elderly ladies came across as quintessential "church ladies" in their bearing and demeanor. They were so sweet, just perfect loveable granny types. I decided to "go for it" and instead of changing the channel to search for a less offensive TV show, I got out the "Finding Faith in Christ
" DVD and I asked the ladies if they'd like to watch a church video on the life of Christ. I had 3 various DVD titles in clam-shell cases, but also had 4 others just in CD-sleeves to save space in the bag.
I did not plan this! Honest! I was thinking of doing my normal restaurant thing, and this opportunity just presented itself.
So the three of us watched the "Finding Faith in Christ" video in the car repair shop's waiting room! Why not?
And the really cool thing is that the ladies got into it. They started quoting lines in advance of the characters, because they already knew the scriptures. I was right. I just knew
they were church ladies!
When it was over, the ladies started a gospel discussion. One lady started telling me her religious history, and wanted to know about my church, so I gave them an info flyer with the local mission office number, one of the central toll-free numbers, and the list of the local chapels. The other lady talked about her travels to the Holy Land, and how that meant so much to her. I offered them the DVD, and they gratefully and enthusiastically accepted it, and I included my card.
Their car was soon ready, and the ladies departed.
11/07/2006. 743. The next group of people in the waiting room was a man, his wife, and his sister. Then an individual man, and another individual lady. The three-some was traveling through Indiana and their car had broken down. I think I was watching one of my other videos, or had just taken it out, when they came in.
I thought "It worked once, let's see if it works again." I forget how I segued into suggesting we all watch a church video, but I chose "Together Forever.
It turned out that the individual man was a pastor at a local church, and the out-of-state man was a retired minister/evangelist, so they had no problem watching a religious-oriented video. The out-of-state group got very interested in this video, especially during the second segment with the African-American couple. The retired pastor made some very confirming comments. Before it was over, he correctly guessed which church had produced it.
I offered them a free copy of the "Together Forever" video we had just watched and they gratefully and enthusiastically accepted it. They were back a little later, and the sister asked for a copy for herself, so I gave her one too. Since we had to wait a little longer, I suggested watching another. So we then started to watch the "Finding Faith in Christ
" video, but they had to leave before it was over. I offered them that one too, and the sister gratefully and enthusiastically accepted it.
This whole waiting-room episode was so cool. It made the wait go by fast, and it really softened the sting of the cost of car repairs. The enthusiasm of both groups of people in watching the videos and receiving copies for themselves causes me to think the whole thing may have been arranged by Heavenly Father. It's possible. The Lord surely can turn a tragedy (having to buy a new starter) into something joyful like sharing the gospel and making five other people happy and brightening their day.