Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Behind the Scenes of Way of the Master Radio (10-16-07)

Due to technical difficulties, which made me rather cranky, and resulted in the purchase of a new digital recorder, I have no audio for my follow-up interview, from today's WOTMR show.

I'm all better now. :-)

Marissa and I went to our regular fishing pond, the Santa Clarita Superior Courthouse. Our guest for the first hour of the show was Mandy. Mandy was at the courthouse with her husband (or boyfriend), Robert, and her 8-month-old son, Anthony.

Robert and Mandy debated who would be on the show. Robert conveniently excused himself to use the restroom just moments before we went on the air. So, that left Mandy to talk to Ray, on the phone.

Side note: much goes on behind the scenes that never makes it to the ears of our "ten-and-tens of listeners." One thing that hasn't made it on air (although I think it might, someday), is a game Todd and I have been playing for the last several days. The name of the game is "Get An Old Song Stuck In Your Friend's Head So That They Hum or Sing It For Hours." :-)

Todd took the offensive today when I told him that the name of our guest was Mandy. Those of you as old as me and Todd will likely remember Barry Manilow's first hit by the same name--"Mandy." Somehow, Todd managed to work the lyric "She came and she gave without takin'" into a sentence. Since there are no rules to this game, I could not throw a penalty flag. He got me. But I'll be back. ;->

Before I put Mandy on the phone with Ray, she told me that she has a Catholic background, upon which she has built (imagined) a belief system in which everyone goes to heaven, or a person's spirit remains here, on earth, in whatever form they so choose.

Once I put Mandy on the phone, it didn't take long for her demeanor to sour. Can you hear it in her voice. Click here to listen to Mandy's conversation with Ray.

After her conversation with Ray, I spent a few minutes talking to Mandy. As I do with each of our guests, the first thing I asked her was, "So, how did it go?"

"Umm, it went fine." (Do you believe her? Look at her picture, above.)

I told Mandy that by the look on her face and her tone of voice, it didn't seem like the conversation went "fine."

Mandy said that everyone has different beliefs and it's okay to lie if you are doing it to save another person's life or you're trying to do good.

I asked Mandy if beliefs were more important than truth. She said, "Beliefs. Because the more you believe, the more you get in life. The less you believe, the less you get in life."

My poor daughters. Every time someone makes the assertions that Mandy made, whichever one of my daughters is with me becomes my son, John. I asked Mandy if I believed with all my heart that Marissa was my son, John, would she ever be my son.

While Mandy conceded that, in the case of my daughter truth was more important than belief, she insisted that if she believes in God, believes she is a good person, and goes to church, then when she faces God, He is going to say, "Yeah, you believed in Me." And that would get her into heaven.

I then took Mandy into the courtroom. "Mandy, let's say you were here at court today because you broke the law. You're guilty. The evidence is there and you confess to the crime. When you stand before the judge for sentencing, do you think it would matter at all if you told the judge, 'I don't believe you are going to sentence me.'"

She agreed that if she "did the crime" she should "do the time." But then she jumped right back into self-righteous mode and said, "The only way God won't let someone into heaven is if they are a mass murderer or a rapist of children. But if you're a good person, with a good soul, mind, and being you're going to go to heaven."

I asked Mandy if she had ever been angry with someone.

"Everyone gets angry." She said--once again deflecting responsibility away from herself. While she wouldn't admit to saying she ever hated someone, she did admit to harboring bitterness and calling someone a fool. I took her to God's Word, explaining to her that such feelings of animosity are considered by God to be murderous and deserving of hell.

"Yeah, but if that's the standard, then everyone is going to hell." She retorted.

"Well, it's not that everyone is going to hell. It's that everyone deserves to go to hell--including me." I answered. "If God judges us according to His standard, then everyone false short of that standard.

Even though Mandy was not at all humbled by the Law (at least not outwardly), I took her back to the courtroom and presented the gospel to her. One reason I did so is because Robert was standing nearby, holding Anthony, and listening to every word being said. While the Law appeared to have no visible affect on Mandy, maybe it was making an impression on Robert.

I found it fascinating that Mandy seemed to really squirm when I began to talk about the sacrifice of Christ. She repeatedly looked at Robert, as if she was hoping he would step in or at least pull her away from the conversation.

The conversation ended with me explaining to Mandy that if there was anything we could do to save ourselves, or if we could be good enough to earn or deserve heaven, then it makes no sense for Jesus, God in the flesh, to die a horrible death on the cross. If we could get there on our own, then why did God have to die in our place?

She said that made sense, but I could tell she was still clinging to her own perceived goodness.

I gave Mandy and Robert copies of the Hollywood and God DVD and the Jump or Perish tract.

I had a lady named Amanda line up for the second hour of the show. Before handing her the phone, I shared a "Cop Tale" with Todd and Ray. I used an incident in which me and my partners made an arrest of a heinous murderer as he walked our of a Mormon stake, following a memorial service. Now, that's something you don't get to do every day. ;-)

I used the story to segue into a conversation about the tares among the wheat. Click here to listen to the "Cop Tale" and the ensuing conversation.

Unfortunately, as I was sharing the story, Marissa ran up to me and whispered, "She had to go!" Amanda had a change of heart and walked into the courtroom. Oh, well. Sometimes you can get a fish right up to the shore, before it snaps your line and gets away.

It was still a good day of fishing. :-)


Karen (Rosesandtea) said...

Let's hope Mandy "took" something unlike the Mandy in the song. (but did you send her away? yeah, I'm old enough....)

Betty said...

I want to make a "sliding scale" tract or visual, and let the person move the scale to where God will say they are good enough to enter HEaven. And/or, if they have friends nearby, let them use the scale to judge their friends to help show the absurdity of their thinking.