Posted by: Don Linnen | 31 July 2017

Len and Tish

Now about Tish and her story. And someone else who’s affected me, Leonard Sweet.

Len preached at our church one Sunday morning, spoke again that evening, then hung out with a few of us after that. I began following him on Twitter those many years ago – and presumed to call him “Len.”

Len’s a character, a thought provoker, and a storyteller. He admits to a time when he was determined to expose the “nimcompoopery and poppycockery, if not tomfoolery and skullduggery of all religions.” (His words, not mine.) He reaches small groups and large audiences through public speaking, social media, and more than a few books.

Tish is just a storyteller. She quietly does it mouth to ear…usually just her mouth to only a few ears. She doesn’t publish books or post Tweets.

A few months ago some of us spoke with her via Skype. I was struck by her description of where she lives in the Middle East.

She said that when the name of Christ is NEVER spoken, there’s a spiritual darkness that hovers. It’s real and it’s oppressive.

I’ve experienced that sad darkness to some degree in lovely, fun-filled homes in this country. I cannot imagine that feeling across an entire country.

Tish talks about hope, forgiveness, and perseverance with anyone who will listen. She tells stories about Jesus and the good news of the gospel.

Tim Challies gets it right: “The gospel removes shame, it removes fear, and it removes guilt. It restores honor, it restores power, it restores innocence. The gospel speaks to every person in every culture and addresses their every need.”

Last month Len tweeted: “The right story at the right time in your life can change everything and help you move forward through anything.”

The story of forgiveness is a universal one, but it’s not one that’s heard everywhere. Certainly not in many countries around the world. Not even in many American homes where the only approved stories include magic fairies and unicorns.

Tish is telling the right story at the right time. We need more Tishes.

And we need to be more like Tish. It can change everything.

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