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Sojourner - Chester Cook

Occasionally, someone will walk into the Atlanta Airport Chapel whom I refer to as a sojourner. A sojourner is a person who is journeying from place to place, based on a feeling or "spiritual unction."

Last year, over one of the college-bowl-game weekends, such a person wandered into the Airport Chapel. His name was Vinson. Vinson came to Atlanta to witness to the fans of a bowl game. He was young and carefree and a very likeable guy.

I was trying to help a young "missionary" couple get to New Orleans, but the airfares were very expensive and the bus was not scheduled for New Orleans.

Out of the blue, Vinson said he felt compelled of the Lord to give the couple a ride to New Orleans. After talking with Vinson for a few minutes, they felt assured that he was a good person and agreed to take him up on his offer. As they walked away, I wondered if this was a divine appointment?

On the Monday following the bowl weekend, I arrived at work and found a raw-looking fellow standing in front of the chapel door. He had spiked hair and several metal objects hanging from his ears and protruding out of his lips and eyebrows. His face was covered with gothic tattoos.

He asked me if I was the chaplain? To which I responded, "Yes, how may I help you?"

He told me his name was Dagon and that he was a Wiccan. He began to tell me how he and his girl (who was elsewhere in the airport) had been waiting since Sunday night in the Airport because the transmission and engine in their car blew up just out of Atlanta. He said they needed to get home to Augusta, but did not have money.

After talking with him for a few more minutes, he told me that Wiccans believe in self and in the natural powers. I asked him if he believed in God, and he said that god was an invention of man. He said that men use the idea of god to put fear into people and to control people.

I replied that I didn't fear God, but that I loved God and found God to be loving and kind. I challenged him to be open to God. I told him that God would prove Himself to him through His goodness.

I told Dagon to find his girlfriend, and I would see if I could find any help for them. I turned my efforts to trying to find some way to get them to Augusta. Again, the airfares and bus were not very encouraging. I was disappointed that I was not able to provide good news.

I returned to the chapel and found that Vinson had returned from New Orleans. He was talking to Dagon. Dagon was on the ropes. I overheard Vinson say, "You can have my car."

I was shocked.

Vinson turned to me and said, "My Uncle paid for my tickets to Paris, France and I am leaving tonight. I was going to ask you if you knew anyone that needed a car? But God provided me an answer already. The Lord told me to give my car to Dagon."

Dagon was very convicted by Vinson's generous gift. He thanked Vinson. Vinson handed Dagon the keys and title, but said someone will have to pay the airport parking and fill the tank. I agreed to do both.

Vinson took his Bible and read this verse to Dagon, "Don't you know that the reason God is good to you is because he wants you to turn to him?" (Romans 2:4.)

Vinson left to catch his flight, and I took Dagon and his girlfriend to get the car out of parking and to get a tank of gas. They dropped me off back at the airport and said, "You know, God is good."

I prayed for them and bid them a safe journey home. I received an e-mail from Vinson several days later that read, "I really felt the Holy Spirit moving when I was in the Chapel at the Airport. God is Good"

If you have any comments on this column, please contact me at chaplain@airportchapel.org.