A man is stumbling by the riverside totally drunk pulling his horse behind him. He is just too drunk to even be able to ride the horse, having tried several times and fallen off within minutes.
As he walks by the river with his horse he comes upon a preacher baptising people in the river and shouting in a loud voice “Repent you sinners. Repent and find Jesus!”
He staggers to the river’s edge and subsequently he falls in dragging his horse behind him.
The preacher turns around and is almost overcome by the smell of alcohol. He asks the drunk, “Are you ready to find Jesus?”
The drunk answers, “Yes I am”.
So the preacher grabs him and dunks him in the water. He pulls him up and asks the drunk, “Brother, have you found Jesus?”
The drunk replies, “No, I haven’t”.
The preacher shocked at the answer, dunks him into the water again for a little longer this time. He again pulls him out of the water and asks, “Have you found Jesus, my brother?”
The drunk answers again, “No, I haven’t”.
By this time the preacher is at his wits end and he dunks the drunk in the water again, but this time he holds him down for about 30 seconds, and when he begins kicking his arms and legs, he pulls him up.
The preacher again asks the drunk, “For the love of God, have you found Jesus?”
The drunk wipes his eyes and catches his breath and says to the preacher, “Are you sure this is where He fell in?”
There’s a message in this joke for us Christians. How often, whilst well-meaning, we try to tell others about our beliefs and end up confusing them and perhaps, un-wittingly, driving them away from God rather than towards Him.
It is worth remembering that not everyone is at the same stage of knowing God as perhaps we are. You wouldn’t feed a new-born baby pizza or French fries; would you? So let’s go easy with new Christians or people who have yet to know the Lord as we do.
The best way to teach Christianity is by living it as Jesus would want us to.
“Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.” St Francis of Assisi.