This is the photo prompt by Roger Bultot for this week's Friday Fictioneers. To me, it signifies a horrible, grimy place where my gospel-centered story takes place.
PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

“The gospel is not a doctrine of the tongue, but of life. It cannot be grasped by reason and memory only, but it is fully understood when it possesses the whole soul and penetrates to the inner recesses of the heart.” – John Calvin

I was sitting at this graffiti-coated table when a man approached me. He sat on a chair, feigning concern. “Have you invited Jesus into your heart?” He asked and went on about living your best life.

I wanted to tell him that the gospel was antithetical to what he was selling. That Christianity isn’t about wealth, and picking up your cross signified a death sentence. That God elects and doesn’t ask to be invited into hearts, and wants you to count the cost before following him. But I stared at the grime, the colour of sin, while he prattled on.

For Friday Fictioneers

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Tanmay Philip
August 12, 2022 5:39 pm

For some reason, these type of people have never targeted me. I must look like I’m irredeemable or something. I don’t believe in predestination, which you seem to be touching on very lightly (or have I interpreted it wrong?), though the core of this post is about suffering. Still, this is an immersing read that sucks you in.

Tanmay Philip
August 12, 2022 6:45 pm
Reply to  Nitin Lalit

It doesn’t sound too preachy at all. Always a pleasure, Nitin.

August 12, 2022 7:28 pm

Religion can be the excuse for everything. If someone thinks they, and only they know the truth, they are always wrong. And then there are some who find wisdom in scriptures and reflect on it.

Keith's Ramblings
August 12, 2022 8:21 pm

He was probably as sincere in his beliefs as your narator was in theirs, which will always be the way with so many conflicting religions practiced throughout this world. Don’t start me on predestination!

Michael Humphris
Michael Humphris
August 12, 2022 8:52 pm

Perhaps all lives lived are preordained, but every path has junctions, which one we follow creates possibilities.

August 12, 2022 9:17 pm

I could totally see that happening at a table just like this! Great use of the prompt 🙂

Laurie Bell
August 13, 2022 4:10 am

A great story. You’ve shown the disquiet in his heart well. I’m not sure I could have sat there listening though. Great emotional piece here.

August 13, 2022 6:02 am

I think these to people are very much alike. Neither one realizes the other thinks they are lacking in understanding. The one thinks the other needs to hear his message, while the listener thinks the other believes he is fooling the speaker that he is listening. They are both wasting their time. But that happens many times between people!

ben Alexander
August 14, 2022 12:04 pm

Simply put, I think people who have a faith that I can respect are the ones who have no need to convince others of it.


August 14, 2022 7:44 pm

Dear Nitlin,

Like anything else faith is an individual thing. We approach it our own ways. It’s more important to live it than push it. (although I think sharing has its place). Thought provoking story. And a hearty welcome to Friday Fictioneers.



August 15, 2022 6:30 am

Any religion that has a conversion or exclusionary aspect to it is suspect. Others have the freedom to choose what gives them comfort, but they need to stay out of my face about it.

August 15, 2022 10:00 am

I wish people would mind their own business and let people be. These people are arrogant. Faith or lack of is personal. If an individual wants to know more they will seek. Makes a good story though. 😀

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
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