The conversation, like the midday sun, was as warm and sunny while we stood outside my front door chatting. She had brought a Bible and a pamphlet, wondering if I'd like to read articles about how the Bible was true and the foundation for our lives.
I told her that I read the Bible daily and depended on it for life. "But I think we're on different spiritual walks," I said. "I believe Jesus is my savior and that he is God. I don't think you do."
She gently shook her head. She put the pamphlet away as I said, "I love Jesus and I don't think your booklet would do me much good."
"I am so glad you read the Bible," she said. "I know many don't and I don't know how they get along."
So for another five minutes, a follower of Jesus and a Jehovah's Witness discussed the value of God in a cold and dark world. We agreed that a life denying God is an empty, purposeless existence.
As she drove away, I thought of plenty more to say. I would have asked her how I could pray for her. I would have asked how her relationship with God strengthened her and where she found comfort in the Bible during those frightening night hours. I would have asked her how her spiritual choices had changed her life. And eventually I would have asked how she found salvation without Jesus.
Once I was afraid to have a Jehovah's Witness at my door, for fear they'd stump me. Actually, for fear they knew more about the Bible than I did. In my next stage, I thought I had to win the debate with them. After that, I was sure I was to convert them in one quick conversation.
But that day, as two women enjoyed the warm fall sunshine and discussed the value of God's Word, what I wanted to do was love her and hear her heart. She was a person, not an icon for a religious philosophy.
Jesus sat in mid-day at a well and chatted about religious ideas with a Samaritan woman. He wasn't afraid of her misinterpretation of the law. He showed her kindness and a path to truth.
These days, that's what I'd like to do when a Jehovah's Witness stops by. Love, listen, and show them truth.