“A lady had a stroke right in the line at the DMV!”
That was the message of the breathless call I received this morning from Val Scott, one of our local DMV evangelists who preaches nearly every morning to those waiting in line before the office opens.
He told me that just before he was about to speak, a lady had a stroke while standing in line, fell over unconscious, and an ambulance took her immediately to the hospital after a few other people tried in vain to resuscitate her. Val said he will never forget this experience as long as he lives. When he recites the death statistics before each morning’s sermon he will always bring this event to mind as a warning to everyone that no one knows when their time will come.
Read the email he sent me along with his message here:
Hey pastor, I got to the dmv at 8:10 am to a huge line of people wrapped around the building because they did not know that on Wednesdays only, the DMV opens at 9:00 am, and every other day of the week at 8:00 am. At about 8:15 a woman in the line collapsed and fell to the floor. Many in the line rushed to her as she convulsed on the ground. She was breathing fast and eyes twitching like she was having a stroke. The 911 call brought the ambulance fast, but they still could not revive her. They put her on a gurney and into the ambulance while the whole line watched disillusioned. As soon as the siren from ambulance was far enough away to preach, I addressed the line and preached a full gospel message starting with the “death statistics” from Ray’s web site, “Every day 90,000 people die in hospitals from medical mistakes. That is, one American dies in a hospital from a medical error or lethal infection every 6 minutes. Medical blunders are the 8th leading cause of death in the United States. Did you all know that around 43,000 people die in car accidents per year? And another study shows that one American is killed by a drunk driver every 31 minutes. That may make some of you want to stay home, but think again. One American is killed in an accident at home every 29 minutes. Falls kill around 17,000 people per year. An FBI report shows that one American is murdered every 31 minutes. And another study shows that around 150,000 people every 24 hours around the world, die. That means since the time I’ve started talking till now we’ve probably lost around 200 people already. And right here this morning, this woman dropped to the floor having a stroke, and we pray that she’ll be alright, but you might ask why am I saying all these things to you at this early hour. Well, it’s because we all have something in common, and that is that we all die, 10 out of 10 people make it, we just don’t know when. It could be 20 years from now, or it could be 10 years. But the harsh reality is that it could be this year or this week, or just as we saw this woman fall to the floor today, for some of us it could even be today!” Then I gave them the million dollar question, “So the biggest and most important question you can ask yourself is this, if you were to die today, if your heart was to stop beating and you fell to the floor right now, would you go to a place called Heaven or a place called Hell?” Then I gave them the Commandments and asked them if they had broken them just once. And if they did, they would be seen as lawbreakers and be judged according to the Law without partiality. They would go to God’s prison, Hell for all eternity, and there be tormented day and night forever with all the Lawbreakers of eternity. I had their attention the WHOLE MESSAGE. They were very attentive and seemingly desperately listening. Then I gave them the Good News of Jesus Christ, and how He took away their judgment at the cross if they would repent and trust in Him. I told them, “We broke the Law, but He paid our fine to God, it’s just that simple.” The instance of the woman who fell and had a stroke at the DMV is sad, and I pray she is alright, but I will use her story for the rest of my life in gospel preaching to the lost.