The Creative Genius of an Apostle

It doesn’t take much to change a life … or to save it.
by Lawrence McCLure, LC | Source:
The dry dusty desert wind whipped across the soldiers’ faces. Four young Americans were on patrol in Iraq, looking for the ever elusive enemy. They were proud to fight for freedom yet waiting anxiously to see their folks back home.

At the moment, peace reigned, and only the hum of the jeep’s motor broke the calm of dusk, until suddenly— BOOM!


Half a world a way, in Cincinnati, Ohio, two businessmen huddled together in an intense meeting. Max had come all the way from Chicago to help his friend Steve, a creative genius, hone the sales pitch to sell his latest invention.

“Steve, what do you say we call it a morning’s work and head off to lunch,” exclaimed Max with a big smile.

“Great idea, Max. Where do we go?” Steve replied.

“You’re the local around here. Take me some place I’ll never forget,” retorted Max. Steve thought a bit and then remembered it was Thursday, when he had a Gospel Reflection over lunch with some other businessmen.

So ever the creative-genius, both as a businessman and an apostle, Steve invited Max along. Max vacillated, but Steve continued, “You’ll never forget this lunch. The food won’t be Five Star, but the company is great and you’ll walk away a better man.”

At noon most of the regulars, plus Max, had cramped into the meeting room of the local Chevy Dealer. While eating their sandwiches the men talked about how their week went, read a Gospel passage, applied it to their lives, and concluded with a prayer.

Max, who had been rather quiet the whole time, but listening attentively, asked the men to pray for his son Joe doing service in Iraq. The men shook the crumbs off their laps as they stood up, and as they humbly bowed their heads, they offered up a fervent prayer for Joe’s safety. It was 1:30. Having finished late again, the men rushed off their separate ways, and Max set off to return to Chicago.


On Friday, Steve received an expected phone call from Max.
“Steve!” Max shouted eagerly, “Hey, Steve, are you there?”

“Yeah, I’m here. What’s up?” replied Steve. “It sounds like something’s wrong.”

“Actually, things couldn’t be better … couldn’t be better. I just got a call from Joe. Thanks for inviting me to the meeting, Steve. I know I was dragging my feet, but it’s just like you said I’ll never forget that lunch…”

It took a while for Steve to calm Max down. Joe had called his dad, Max, to tell him that he loved him; then he told him that the day before they had an encounter with an IED (improvised explosive device) while patrolling in their jeep.

One of the soldiers died on the spot, two others, in critical condition, were flown immediately to Germany for medical attention. Joe had hardly a scratch. The encounter with the IED was at approximately 21:30 Baghdad time, just after the simple prayer by those 8 men in a meeting room of the local Chevy Dealer.

Because Steve had the courage to be an apostle and invite his friend to the Thursday lunch Gospel reflection, one life was saved, and another changed forever.

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