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Dr. Jordan Peterson, best-selling author, clinical psychologist, and quasi-cultural messiah, recently appeared at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, to deliver a convocation speech.
While many of Peterson’s appearances are generally rife with notable moments, this one may stick in his head as more memorable than most as one audience member rushed the stage and proceeded to break down crying in a plea for help.
Peterson delivered his remarks in a panel-type discussion along with David Nasser, senior vice president of spiritual development for Liberty University; Jerry Falwell Jr., president of the university; and Gary Habermas, historian and apologetics professor at the school.
In the video, you can hear a commotion occurring on the side of the stage and a young man rushes up onto the platform where the four men are seated and begins shouting and crying.
“My name is David … and I need help! I need help!” he cries. “I just wanted to meet you.
“I called 911,” David wails. “I want to be well. My God, I just want to know Him better.”
Instead of allowing security to escort the young man from the stage, Nasser immediately approaches David as the young man sinks to his knees and tells the young man that he is “in the right place.”
Peterson follows suit and approaches David with comfort and open arms.
Nasser immediately launches into a prayer for David and his healing, asking that God would heal him, that the Holy Spirit would work in him and for him, and that David would get the help that he needs.
After the prayer, David allows himself to be escorted from the stage. Nasser tells David, “Hey, buddy. We’re for you.”
Clearly moved, Nasser goes on to use the incident as a teaching moment to spread the Gospel. Peterson — who is not a Christian — appears teary and red-faced, clearly moved by David’s demeanor and desperation.
Nasser goes on to point out that it’s not just David who feels the way David feels — many other people, including adults, feel the same way and need God in their lives.
Nasser lauds Peterson’s best-selling book, “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos,” and points out that it’s important for people to have a roadmap to navigate the how-tos of life.
“I’ll be the first to tell you, in front of our distinguished guest, that these rules work,” he goes on to tell the audience. “But they all stop short without the Ruler.”
Despite not being a Christian, Peterson is visibly touched by the reception, the incident with young David, and the compassionate way the staff and students respect David and his troubles. In closing, Nasser goes on to ask Peterson how he could pray for the clinical psychologist.
Peterson, clearly overcome by emotion once more, responds, saying that he would pray to avoid paying undue prices for mistakes he will inevitably make in his life.
During the prayer, Nasser interjects another request, praying that Peterson would one day find God and make His kingdom his home.