I met a new friend tonight. And I may never see him again.

While studying at Amelie’s French Bakery (a MUST for all visiting Charlotte), my new friend came and sat next to me. He was wearing a Duke University t-shirt. Turns out that Charlotteans have a general disdain for my favorite college basketball team. So those of us that are fans have to stick together.

My new friend and I started talking about “what we do.” He is a graduate student at Duke University’s business school. I am a pastor. The conversation was brief, yet very genuine.

I believe wholeheartedly in my faith. He doesn’t see much need for God or religion in his life. But he did say that he responds to God “when he’s in crisis.” Very interesting. Very honest.

I hope I get to spend some more time with my new friend. I think we’d get along just fine. I love when people are honest. Genuine. Real. Even when they are acknowledging that they don’t believe the same way that I believe. I think that friendships are built upon a foundation of authenticity.

Conversations like these make me feel alive. I love hearing other people’s perspectives on matters of faith. I hope I get to meet my new friend again. His perspective challenges mine. And I love that.