KidsView  | The Adventist Review for kids and those who always will be kids at heart | November 2017

Playing With Fire

By Don Whitley

Don lived in California. He decided to go on a long road trip. He packed all he would need in two small suitcases. At the last minute, he decided to pack his Bible. He wasn’t sure why. Just thought it was a good idea, even though he never read it much anymore.

His travels eventually brought him to Miami Beach, Florida, a long way from California. Don saw a “Help Wanted” sign in the window of Johnny Rockets—a restaurant that sells burgers. They hired him as a dishwasher. It had been seven months since he left California. In that time he’d never open the Bible even once.

One evening Don arrived at work and found he had a helper. Josh usually worked at another Johnny Rockets in the city, but for that night, he worked with Don. Josh was a Christian. While he washed dishes with Don, Josh began to talk about Jesus. 

Don mentioned that he knew about Jesus—he had learned about Him when he was a child. But that was really all there was to it. 

Josh asked, “What are you waiting for?” Then he added, “You’re literally playing with fire.”

That got Don’s attention. He remembered many of the things he learned as a child. He’d never thought of it like that. People who put off knowing Jesus will one day be lost. Don was reminded about the verses in the Bible that talk about a final lake of fire.

When work was finished that evening, Don and Josh boarded a bus to head home. Josh continued to talk about Jesus. Don continued to be reminded of all he had forgotten. He forgot how much Jesus loves him.

“Have you ever asked Jesus to come into your heart?” Josh asked.


“Would you like to?”

They were riding on a public bus. Don had never prayed out loud in front of another person other than his parents when he was a boy.

 “Right now?” asked Don.

“Sure,” Josh answered.

“I don’t know how.”

“That’s OK,” Josh said. 

“I’ll lead, and you follow. But you have to mean it.”

Don thought about it. 

He did want Jesus in his heart. 

So there on a city bus in the middle of the night, with Josh’s help, Don asked Jesus to come into his heart.

As they finished praying, Don opened his eyes, and smiled. 

“I can’t stop smiling,” Don said.

Josh smiled back and said, “We’re going to heaven!”

Josh invited Don to come to his house for the night. They stayed up all night talking about Jesus. Don found out that Josh used to live on the streets. About six months earlier, Josh found a Bible and began to read it. No one taught him. He just kept reading and found Jesus in its pages. Now he shared Jesus with everyone he met, including Don.

After months of carrying his Bible, Don now opened it and began reading just like Josh. Josh had reminded him of his friend, Jesus.

Later Don left Miami for a new place, but he kept reading his Bible. He never saw Josh again. Don is so thankful that Josh shared his faith. Because of Josh, Don looks forward to when Jesus comes again. And, he’ll get to see Josh.

­This article is adapted from “Spur-of-the-Moment Witness,” that appeared in Adventist Review, November 2017.