About this time last year I wrote a post called “Serendipity” about the awesome intricacy of God’s sovereignty in allowing all things to work together for the sake of His name.
Oswald Chambers tells us to go about our daily lives resting in the providence of God, and one day, when we are not expecting it, we will bump into our destiny and hear the voice of God calling us into a divine appointment. But when one of those serendipitous moments occurs when we are tired, in a hurry, or feeling insecure in our convictions, what should we do?
I’m a conflict-avoider by nature. If I’m not sure of the outcome of an interchange, my knee-jerk reaction is to run for the hills. As I sat and pondered a possible divine appointment that I blew off recently, I asked myself what made me freeze up.
Fearfulness is a product of lack of faith. It is a symptom of flagging confidence that God controls all things and is the ultimate guardian and protector of my soul.
When divine appointments catch me off guard, when I am not expecting it (but then, that’s exactly Chambers’s point, isn’t it?), I should be so in sync with the living Spirit within me, so sure in my confidence in my Redeemer, that He should be able to minister through me, regardless of how I’m feeling. I shouldn’t have to think about how to act or what to say—the integrity of Jesus should shine through all the mess that is me.
During my last divine appointment, my heart was racing and I felt like all teeth and no tongue. I mangled my words and can’t even remember what I said, or if it made any sense at all. But healing and divine love came of it, and a strong, unbreakable bond of the love of Christ was sealed that day. My intellectual mind kept analyzing what I had said, was it clear, was it complete, was it good enough, was it…was it…was it?
I can almost hear the Shepherd laugh when I think about how stressed out I was. But then came His peace, His comfort, the embrace of a Father’s arms and the still, small voice that said, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” It was a mountaintop high.
But not all of our appointments can be such great successes. I shanked my appointment in San Diego last year on the first go-round—ostensibly because of bad timing—but I prayed for a second chance, and along it came, more perfect than the first.
One could argue that the spirit of discernment and integrity guides us the longer and more faithfully we walk with God, and intuition that says, “Nope, not the right time,” cannot be ignored. But what we really need to ask ourselves is, “Am I avoiding this situation because of the Spirit’s leading, or simply because I am afraid?”
I suppose the point of this post is that there is always room for redemption with God. He knows my heart and believes in second chances. He is the only One who can make all things brand new. To those whose appointments I have flubbed (knowingly or unknowingly), I pray for fearlessness, faith, and another opportunity to make it right.Read More...