Serving in an interim position has provided me with some unique opportunities. I have met people I would never have met and visited places I would likely never have seen. I just this week traveled from my home in Florida to Wisconsin. Some random conversations and encounters in two airports got me thinking: Is much in life random? A conversation while waiting in the security line in Sarasota was quite intriguing. The person said to me, “Where are you going?” Wisconsin, I said, “Oh, that is where I am from,” was his reply. “Why are you going there?” he asked, so I told him and, his response. “Please pray for me and my family!” I said I would, but he wanted me to pray immediately. So… I prayed, “God bless this man and his family. You know exactly what they need, and I thank you for your grace and mercy and bless my brother who is helping us today get to where we need to be.” When I looked at him, he said, “Thank you, I needed that!” And just as quickly as he entered my life, I moved along and may never see him again. Yet, I think this did not seem random; it seemed intentional. Does it happen to me everywhere I go? No! Yet, there are times when for just a brief moment, I feel that I am where I am supposed to be, and making a difference is about brief interludes as well as lifelong relationships.
On my second flight, I met a lady traveling home who was quite inebriated by all appearances. As you might imagine, she was the most talkative seatmate I have had in a very long time. During the flight, she had three glasses of wine, which I am sure was not her first three of the day. She had a story to tell and told me her life story. She asked me why I was going to Wisconsin, and I told her, often, when folks find out I am a clergy member, it can be quite a conversation killer. This lady was thrilled and asked me to pray before we took off that we would not crash. She was loud and not wanting to disturb the other passengers. I prayed for a safe liftoff. She thanked me profusely and said she wanted me to pray again before we landed. I promised I would.
During the flight, I heard her life story. After hearing of her pain and disappointment, I shared my faith and relationship with Christ. She said she had recently gone back to church. I told her that was great and conversed with her about trusting God for our salvation and his healing of our brokenness. I will not tell you what she does for a living, but she is in one of the helping professions. When the plane started its descent, she told me to pray for a safe landing, and I did. I feel I will likely never see these two individuals again, but somehow we were together for a brief moment. I have prayed for both of them for the two days since I met them. I am not so sure it was a random occurrence. I wonder if I was a part of someone’s prayers for these two people.
My one observation I want to share with you today is this: As you move through today, pay attention, you may be the answer to someones prayer today!