Those are the words on a sign held up almost every day by a man that loves Jesus!
I work in the Alberta City area of Tuscaloosa and occasionally go to the drive-thru at Bojangles in Five Points to get some breakfast. I started seeing a man in front of the store one day by the roadway carrying a sign that read: “Jesus Will Save You”. I honked at him and waved giving him a thumbs up and he did the same back to me. Then one day I saw a post on FB about him but it just said his name was Bonner and very little other information. Time and time again when I would go get breakfast he was always there holding his sign proclaiming that Jesus Would Save You.
Always being in a hurry I never had the time to stop and talk to him but one day I ran across a post written about him that told me everything I was wanting to know. What an inspiration this man is! Thank you brother Bonner and may God bless all you efforts to glorify Him!
Ron Finger is a Christian truck driver that made the time to talk to Mr. Bonner because he was interested in his story too. Below is his post. Thanks to brother Ron for letting me share it.
The Signs of a Path
In my line of work, I transport merchandise to a major retail chain in Alabama and Tennessee. I have seen many things along the way that’s exciting, beautiful, tragic and disgusting. Most of the time it’s boring and routine. About three months ago when I was headed to one of my daily stops in Tuscaloosa Alabama, all of that changed. There was a man standing on the corner of University Boulevard E & Veterans Memorial. He was holding a sign that read: JESUS WILL SAVE YOU.
As I drove through the intersection I honked my horn and waved at him to show my agreement. With a big ol’ smile he pointed at me and waved. I continued onto my destination not really thinking much more about our brief encounter.
The next day was the same, as was the next day and many days thereafter. I deliver to Tuscaloosa everyday with the exception of Saturdays; and for 2 months straight, in the same location, that gentleman was pacing back and forth holding his sign while waving, pointing and smiling at all who honked their horns.
Finally my curiosity peaked and I had to find out his story. I had him pegged for a local Pastor trying to “drum up” new members for his church or just a Preacher spending an hour or two fulfilling the “Highways and Hedges” commandment the Bible speaks of. Boy was I wrong. Upon completing my delivery for the day, I pulled off the highway, just past his roadside and grassy “pulpit”. I introduced myself and told him that I use Social Media (Facebook) as a ministry tool to share scripture, devotionals and/or whatever else God has laid on my heart for that particular day. I stated that after seeing him at this location for 2 months straight, I had to hear his story and hoped to write about it for a new blog I was planning to start. He was more than happy to share.
His name is James David Bonner; at the age of 49, he is a longtime born-again believer and follower of Jesus Christ who has lived in Tuscaloosa (“Just right down the road”, as he put it) most of his life. He stated that his “Daddy” (not himself) was a former Baptist Minister and that he was raised in church from his childhood. As a young man he decided to be a Comedian and would go door to door promoting himself and sell cassette tapes of his comedy routine.
*While doing research for this writing, I learned that he added Mad-dog to his name and that he traveled to churches and other venues in Alabama, Florida and a few other states performing his comedy. He is a retired substitute Teacher as well.
James David, as I prefer to know him as, began to tell me that after doing the “Comedy Thing” for awhile, he began to feel an urgency to see lost souls saved. He vowed to God that he would spend his remaining days spreading the gospel however and wherever he could. He started out sharing the role with another Christian Believer holding signs and most recently stated that he sometimes teams up again to spread God’s love and word. But as of this publishing, he’s been at this location for 3 months now.
And so began his ministry to reach the lost at an intersection of Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
While standing there in the hot sun talking with my new friend, numerous people would drive by blowing their horns, hollering and waving. There was even a few people who pulled up to verbally and more personally show their appreciation and support. One supporter was a Mexican gentleman who couldn’t (or wouldn’t) speak English; he pulled up and handed an envelope to my new friend. In turn, James David handed him some Christian Tracts in Spanish as well as a New Testament Bible. The young man smiled, nodded and shook his hand before pulling away. Mr. Bonner hands out New Testaments and Tracts as well as discuss his faith and belief in God. His whole purpose in this Ministry and journey is to see lost souls saved, so anyone who stops to ask questions as to his reason behind his roadside manner, will get the word of God one way or another.
In continuing our talk, James David stated that he had plans to travel to the Philippines for a mission trip but that it had been put on hold for a few months. He wants me to stay in touch until then, giving me his phone number ensuring that I can.
This man has chosen to throw his life away. Now wait before you criticize me for saying that.
See Ron’s full post here.
Mr. James Bonner is such a bold witness for Jesus and I know he is impacting many. If this gets to Mr. Bonner…thank you for encouraging me, thank you for your boldness, and thank you for letting God use you. He certainly is! May God bless you in your ministry.