Chance Encounter?
Posted: May 17, 2010 in Uncategorized | 2 Comments |

This past week, I was at a bowling tournament in Nevada.  I had a great time although I didn’t do as well as I would have liked.  I had a great time connecting with friends that I hadn’t seen for a while.  Also, being a sports fan, I love any chance I can get for competition.  The cruddy part was having to be apart from my family for 4 days.  On Friday, I went to the airport in Reno to catch my flight home.  Upon arriving at the airport, I was informed by the airline that my flight was moved back 2 hours because of bad weather in Dallas, TX and because of that, I would most likely miss my connecting flight to Fort Myers.  I was less than thrilled with that news but understood there was nothing anyone could do about the weather.  After waiting for about 2 hours, we were informed that our flight to Dallas had been cancelled.  Cancelled?  Of all of my years of flying, I had never before been scheduled to be on a flight that was cancelled.  Weather has to be pretty bad for an airline to want to cancel a flight.  For the next 3 hours, I waited in line with the airline trying to get booked on another flight out of town.  After finally securing said flight, I had to get a ride back into town, secure a hotel room for another night, and wait for the next day hoping I could finally get home to see my girls.  There is a lot more that has to go along with this story but will have to talk about that another time.

I got to the airport the next day and discovered that we were indeed scheduled to take off at the right time.  Insert huge sigh of relief here.  The flight took off from Reno to Dallas without a hitch.  I spent my time on the flight doing things most people do i.e. reading, napping and watching movies on my computer.  At the end of the flight, I hurried to my connecting gate and plugged in my computer because it was dead.  I wanted to finish the movie that I had started on the previous flight.  Little did I know that God had other ideas for me.  I got on the plane and found myself sitting next to a guy that had a Boston Red Sox shirt on.  After a few minutes of small talk, I asked him what he did for a living.  He informed me that he owns a company that installs satellite systems in homes and businesses in Southwest Florida.  He asked my what I did for a living and when I told him that I was a pastor, his whole countenance changed dramatically.  He said, “So you are a pastor?  Can I ask you a question?  Why did God allow my 7 year old son to die in my arms last year?”  They don’t teach you how to respond to those types of questions in Bible school.  I took a deep breath, asked God for wisdom, and conversed with this gentleman about God for the entirety of the 2 and a half hour flight from Dallas to Fort Myers.  I wish I could tell you that I had the chance to lead this guy to the Lord.  I know that a seed was planted though.  We exchanged information and promised to stay in touch.  He told me that he just may bring his family to church out at West sometime in the next few weeks.  I was so exhilarated by that conversation.  On the way home from the airport, the thought occurred to me.  “I wonder if God allowed my schedule to get messed up just so that I could have a chance to help bring healing and comfort to a guy who was obviously searching.”

When our plans get mixed up, we need to learn to recognize the opportunity that God may be presenting to us.  There is a proverb that says, “Man makes his plans but the Lord determines His steps.”  Sometimes, God’s plans are different than mine.  I need to be willing to play along because after all, I am His servant and He can do with me whatever He wants.  Even if that means messing with my travel schedule.

With Expectancy!

Corey