IMPACTED BY CHRISTIANS
Updated: Nov 5, 2022
By Warrior Richardson
Everyday Christians impact people simply by being themselves. The love of God just flows out of them (1 John 4:19). That's why they should feel uninhibited about giving their testimony (Matthew 5:14-16). By doing so, they can impact people deeply. That’s what they did to me when I was an unbeliever.
I will never forget the Christians who impacted me when I was an avid anti-Christian. For example, once when I was in Rochester New York waiting for the bus, someone came up to me and asked me for 50 cents to catch the bus. I said, "Doesn't it cost 75 cents?" He said, "Yeah." so, I gave him 75 cents. He said, "God loves you." That was over 30 years ago, and I remember it as if it were yesterday. I still remember it because of the way he said it. He really meant it. It really impacted me. It wasn't so much what he said as the way he said it. I could tell he really meant it. Love is unmistakable (Jeremiah 31:3). When that guy said, "God loves you," he put salt in my mouth. I developed a thirst for what he had. I was actually ripe for the Gospel at that moment—maybe not exactly ripe, but certainly nudged a little closer in that direction.
My brother Willie was another Christian who impacted me. I used to trip him up in the scriptures; but after doing so, I would realize he had strength in his life that was due to his faith in Jesus Christ—a strength I wanted. Even as an unbeliever, I was able to discern this strength of his was derived from his faith in Jesus Christ. I couldn’t shake it. It left a lasting impact on me. Our testimony, in combination with our lives (1 Thessalonians 1:5), is a powerful combination. Horace was another Christian who impacted me deeply. I used to walk around the campus of the University of Rochester, where I attended, and shake Christians' faith. I called Horace and his group who went around the campus sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ "that roving band of Christians." I was determined to get him. One day at about 4:00a.m. I was playing my saxophone in the practice room. I left and noticed the door to the cafeteria was opened. It was not supposed to be open at that time of morning, and there was Horace. I thought, "Oh yes, I got him now." But Horace used the classic argument for the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ on me. His logic was impeccable—airtight. That was the most effective strategy for dealing with me because I am a very logical person and respond to logic. He shook my faith in my disbelief. He smiled—he had nothing but love for me. I left dazed—my disbelief shaken. I never fully recovered from that encounter. Giving our testimony is good but giving our testimony with some explanation is greater. Horace was great.
The guy who asked for 50 cents simply showed love—no explanation or elaborate display of deep philosophical or theological knowledge—just love. My brother exhibited a strength whose source I was able to discern even as an unbeliever. I had also seen his change since his conversion; I couldn't deny it. Horace showed love and logic—which included a very detailed and clear explanation and irrefutable argument for the truth of the Gospel. That was the one-two punch that resulted in a knockout. Only a handful of Christians used logic on me. The love/logic combination was the most effective weapon
against my disbelief. I wish more Christians had used that on me. A few others did. One such person who used the love/logic combination on me was a missionary I met while I was at Howard University. He had just returned from Africa. We had long conversations into the wee hours of the night. I would say things like, “love is irrational;” and he would respond with statements like, “love is the highest rationality.” He had my highest respect even while I was an unbeliever. He even gave me books to read, which I did.
 See Who Moved the Stone? by Frank Morison for a detailed presentation of that argument.
In this blog I take a close look at a wide variety of topics using the Bible as my lens. When we look at the world through the lens of scripture we discover life-changing truth that transforms us. We discover our
identity, purpose and worth. We find answers to life's most pressing questions. “If you don't know where you're going any road will take you there.” But when we look at the world through the lens of scripture we find the "way, the truth and the life;" then we live life to the fullest.
The Scarlet Thread LLC is a Christian media production company that produces e-books, audio books, podcasts, explainer videos, animations and comic books in an effort to help skeptics overcome intellectual and emotional barriers to faith.