Friday, 30 April 2010

COSMIC CHRISTIAN, A BELIEVING "GOOD BUDDY"


Citizen's Band radio, commonly known by its initials CB, reached the hight of its popularity by the spring of 1977. Being passionate about long distance communication, I soon became enamoured with that hobby. One of the aspects of CB was that a person used a handle, a self-chosen nickname, on the air. I thought Cosmic Christian would be suitable since it would prompt people to ask what it meant. That would steer the conversation toward eternal matters. Additionally, I would be readily identifiable to Christians as a believer.

Sister R was aghast one Sunday lunch time in April when I told her that I had purchased a transceiver and was talking to other CBers. "You can't possibly want to waste your time like that!" She gasped.

"It's not a waste of time. I've already talked to some people about Jesus and my handle's Cosmic Christian."

"But it's such an ungodly organization."

"No it isn't. There's some folks on there that are Christians. There's even a Christian CB club. Besides that, Jesus told us to go out into the world and preach the gospel, didn't he?"

"Well, I guess so. Don't let those ungodly people sway you and make you lose your faith."

"I won't lose my faith or anything. Who knows, maybe somebody will get saved because of me talking to them on the CB."

"All right then, but advertise him well."

It wasn't always easy to be a good advertisement for Christ on the air. No matter how polite I was, my handle often offended people. Some even swore at me and transmitted music while I tried to make new friends. I did my best to turn the other cheek to these "turkeys," as we called such rude CBers. Even so, my circle of on-air acquaintances grew.

One tradition common to Cbers and amateur radio operators is to send QSL cards. Since I knew that Sister R had a Gestetner spirit duplicator, I asked her after one Sunday service about printing some. "Why do you need those cards for?" she stared hard at me. "We Cbers use them to confirm to each other that we spoke on the air. They're sort of like postcards."

"I don't like using the church equipment to print something secular."

"These won't be sinful. In fact it'll be my way of advertising Jesus through my radio hobby like you said."

"All right, but I can only print a few. We don't have much in the way of card stock for those."

"Thanks so much! I can hardly wait to send those out."

After Sister E drew a pair of praying hands holding an antenna and wrote my handle in capital letters on the front, Sister R printed and cut the cards to the required size. At every coffee break, a gathering of Cbers at a restaurant, I handed them out to the folks who I had spoken to. Though I envied the nice full-colour QSLs that CBers like Caffeine Addict and Big Spender had, The Gestetner cards were better than nothing.

The preceding paragraphs came from my upcoming How I Was Razed memoir. E-mail me for further information about it and my previous books, Deliverance From Jericho (Six Years in a Blind School) and When a Man Loves a Rabbit (Learning and Living With Bunnies) The InScribe writers group page also has information about these memoirs.