Today, many people seemed to be very open to discussing the things of God. I had several good discussions with folks who had evangelical backgrounds that appreciated my interaction even though many of them couldn't explain the gospel. I met two people who not only could explain the gospel quite well, but also embraced it as truth. I also spoke with one Christian who had a difficult time articulating her beliefs, but seemed to demonstrate a sincere desire to learn and grow in her faith.
As expected, several young people I attempted to speak with were more interested in texting and watching YouTube music videos on their laptops than they were in discussing spiritual things. That's par for the course. It makes even more sense given the fact that people are easily lost if you go beyond surface level conversation that lasts longer than 30-60 seconds. Again, most of the answers I received from these folks regarding God and the gospel were of the Moralistic Therapeutic Deism variety than of orthodox, Biblical Christianity.
I did have an interesting conversation with a young lady that was an atheist. She denied that people could know anything with certainty and when pressed on this issue she eventually saw the inherent contradiction involved. She sticks out in my mind because I sensed some subtle hostility in her interaction with me after I started to ask some probing questions. This was not an overt hostility mind you, but the kind of hostility that flies under the radar, the kind that seemed to be rooted in something other than the present conversation. She noted that she sent her children to church on Sunday mornings because she wanted them to learn "morals". I wanted to then ask why she would have her own children learn morality from what she believed to be a fairy tale, but I didn't get the chance to because a friend of hers walking up to sit beside of her briefly interrupted our conversation.
Her friend was a professing Christian, but seemed to be a little uneasy that I was there and asked right off the cuff, "What are you preaching?" to which I responded, "I'm a Christian pastor, and I'm out here talking to people about the Biblical gospel." This young man's uneasiness was certainly understandable given the fact that he didn't know me from Adam. He began to speak of how Christians are so-narrow minded and I responded, "Everybody is narrow minded, it just depends upon what they are narrow-minded about." He said, "that's true." I then turned to resume my conversation with the atheist young lady and asked her how she could make sense out of her objections given her worldview. Once I had made the points I wanted to make I then thanked them for their time and was on my way.
In conclusion, take time to talk to people. Be calm, be nice, and most of all, try to be a good listener. People who vehemently disagree with you yet aren't overtly hostile will oftentimes appreciate a good conversation about ultimate questions.