Some time ago I was working on a large construction project. As a heavy equipment operator, my days tend to be filled with solitude and a definite lack of conversation. When the opportunity to engage in conversation presents itself, I can be a bit gabby. One such moment tends to arise almost daily. When the "oiler" drives his truck along side my machine to provide fuel, grease, oil and coolant.
On this particular job, the oiler was a rather pleasant young man who I looked forward to talking to for the hour or so that it took to perform our task of preventative maintenance. We would engage in discussions on most any topic, including politics and religion.
One day he informs me that he would be leaving the company. I was saddened and asked him why. He told me he was going on a mission to South America. I was instantly excited for him. I proceeded to ask what the core of his mission would be. His reply was "To bring the word of God to indigenous tribes in the Amazon". As our conversation on the subject evolved I could not resist but to ask a question that had confused me for most of my life. Why do these people need "saving"? If a genuinely good man who lives his life providing for his family, being righteous to his community and loving the people in his village is not already in Gods favor, then who is? Are not the gates of the Christian heaven flung open wide for this person who epitomizes the definition of "The Meek"? The answer was as I expected. One must be saved in order to receive the reward of everlasting life.
Two things happend on that day. I wished my friend a safe jounrney, giving him this tidbit of advice. "Don't sneeze on anybody". And I finally confirmed my belief that I am an Atheist.