I had an encounter this morning with a Christian evangelist who wanted to share the good news of Jesus Christ. I was alone and intent on enjoying the busy stillness of an early morning coffee in a Simi Valley Starbucks. While sipping my coffee, I was writing in my notebook to prepare for a long day of meetings. I was not sending out the 'talk to me' vibe.
A young man with a long glorious beard approached and asked if he could talk to me. I nodded yes and motioned the chair opposite of me. With no preamble, he sat down and launched into his sales pitch. It was as if he were working the Christian sales funnel and I was call six of ten. I was polite. I told him that I was not interested in his product, but that if he would like to sit and talk about another subject, I would be happy for the company. I also told him that one of my employees would be coming along soon, so the conversation would have to end then.
He agreed, but immediately disregarded my offer and started talking about how much it meant for him to be a Christian. I politely asked him to leave. After another 20 seconds of inane attempts at Jesus talk, I insisted that he leave. He stood up and walked away, but the returned and tried to leave a pamphlet. I declined. He then attempted to leave it on the table. Ostensibly, for the next guy. I pushed it off the table and on to the floor. He got my message and eventually moved away to bother another customer.
The thing is, this young Christian hipster did not even buy himself a coffee. He was simply there to sell. How crazy is that approach?
My question for you Christians out there is this: Why can't you talk a polite no and let it go?