Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Divine Appointment or Chance Encounter?

"Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." -- Isaiah 30:21

The first day of Fall Break felt more like the end of summer.  High humidity and a warm breeze whetted my appetite for a Jerry's Sno Cone Supreme, a delightfully tasty sno cone laced with vanilla ice cream.  Because I live twenty miles from Jerry's, I was reluctant to make the forty-mile round trip into Memphis just for a sno cone, but my daughter was insistent.  "No," I told her.  "We need to wait until tomorrow, when we are actually going to be in Memphis to deliver books."  Not long after our conversation, I found myself irritated with my son and thought, What better way to cool off than with a long drive on a beautiful day and a refreshing treat from Jerry's?  Throwing all reason right out the window, we hopped in the car and headed for sno cone heaven.

As we approached our final turn to Jerry's I noticed in my rear view mirror two motorcycles behind us, one driven by a woman and the other by a man, whose passenger was apparently their son.  "Bet they're going to Jerry's," I said to Joy.  Sure enough, after we received our sno cones we turned around to see them on the parking lot enjoying theirs.  Before long we were chatting about church, homeschool, and our occupations, and God opened the door for me to share about my books and speaking ministry.  Was all this a chance encounter?  I think not.

God has a habit of orchestrating divine appointments in our lives when we least expect them, if we are in tune with his Spirit and desire to walk in his will.  Earlier in the day I had been praying for opportunities to market my book and ministry, and this encounter was clearly an open door to do that.  Not only did God answer my prayer, but he let my daughter see firsthand how God often works in the lives of his children.  Had I given in to my daughter's plea to go to Jerry's when she wanted rather than at God's appointed time, I would have completely missed a divine opportunity to fellowship with these fellow believers and share the good things that God has been doing in my life. 

The Bible tells us, "Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone" (Colossians 4:5-6).  As you go through your day, look for those golden opportunities to share the good things God has done for you.  Your chance encounter may be someone else's divine appointment with the God who lives in you.

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