“Are dragons real?” was my friend’s question after he read through the book of Revelation. Fascinated by the descriptions and how it comes to life with mentions of the antichrist and beasts and weird creatures that would sound awfully familiar in Hollywood movies and the world of mythical lore, my friend was then someone who was new to Christianity and things pertaining to it.
It was an awkward situation for me because right there in the Christian bookstore where i was then working was the pastor of the church that I was attending. I gulped, as I tried to answer his question.
“I can’t say for sure but maybe the writer of the book used the picture of a dragon as a metaphor to explain something. But I’m not so sure if it is telling us that dragons exist,” was my timid response, trying to sound smart hoping my pastor would not catch my illogical answer towards my friend.
I tried too hard back then to find answers to questions so that anyone that I encountered would find a reasonable explanation to questions of faith that they might have. Even if they ask about whether dragons existed or not.
My fiend was a seeker, in need of someone to hear about his life and struggles. To most people he was this weird kid, though he was one year older than me, who dressed funny and had a look of a person who struggled mentally. Well, I have to say that I looked at him the same way as well. I have to be honest about that.
He would come visit me in the shop and spend the whole day with me talking about Christianity, Jesus, life struggles and how he was coping with life. I would stand behind the counter and listen intently sometimes and sometimes wandering in my thoughts about when he would go back home. Not very christian of me.
There was this one occasion where after disappearing for a period of 2-3 months when he came back to visit where something about him changed. He sounded angry but he was generally good to me. After hearing about his anger problems I offered to pray for him. His response was, “You know what the voice inside me is telling me? What for?” That gave me the creeps. Voices telling him what to do?!!!
But I still maintained my friendship with my so called weird friend.
Then after 3 years of not meeting him because I was in bible school and my sometime reluctance to meet him, being ‘busy,’ he told me of his desire to go to bible school and to follow in my footsteps. Now that’s funny, for me trying to avoid him and everything he looked up to a messed up, unwilling at times, unable to give reasonable answers type of fellow, he wanted to follow in my footsteps.
Well, I told him to go in and try to ask. The principal of my former bible college said OK and he was enlisted as a student. At first people were questioned his inclusion but as time progressed one of my former lecturer told me that he was doing great, coping well with studies and assignment. I was happy to hear about his progressed.
Thinking back and reflecting about my relationship with my friend, I can’t say that I was able to answer all his questions nor was I faithful in giving all my time to be with him, sometimes when he needed someone to talk to. I can only say that I failed in being a true friend to him. But for the life of me, I would not have known that despite of my failures being unable to give my friend a good answer to his questions about dragons and life, God did his work in my dear friends life and I hope that he is doing well in his life and what God has in store for him and his calling.