And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia… Acts 8:26–27
Rats! Another flight delay! Oh well, if you fly much these days you are aware that delayed departures (and arrivals) have become the norm rather than the exception. With airline tickets going up, and airline service becoming less dependable, airports are often host to disappointed and angry people who want to vent their frustration on someone—anyone. If people had head-gaskets like cars do, I am certain that repair shops could make a fortune off passengers at almost every major airport in America. Flying the friendly skies isn’t as friendly as it used to be.
Having been through this before, I have learned that going with the flow is the best way to deal with these types of unexpected delays in life. If God is in control of my life, none of these events catches Him off guard. Curtis Hutson used to say: “Has it ever occurred to you that nothing ever occurs to God?” I am glad that I can cast all of my care on Him, because I know that He cares for me (1 Peter 5:7). With my departure from Denver delayed from 8:40 until 10:15, I had almost four hours to burn. After eating a snack while reading the sports section, I decided that I would walk for an hour to get a little exercise in while waiting.
I hopped the tram to Concourse B to get a change of scenery. I noticed a shoe-shine stand that was closing up shop, and one glance at my Josef Seibels made me wish I had gotten there earlier. They needed a shine, big-time! I glanced at the young man who was sweeping up, and asked him if he was done for the night. He told me that he had time for one more shine, so I climbed up and he got to work on my faded browns.
As Alex and I began to talk, it became very evident to me that this was one of those moments that may not have been found in my month-at-a-glance, but God had it all planned out. It was a divine appointment, and I was suddenly thankful for my delayed flight and the opportunity it afforded me to be an ambassador of my Heavenly Fathers love.
During our conversation I found out that he had accepted Christ as his Saviour when he was a boy in central America, but he had wandered from the Lord and had long been out of fellowship with Him. We talked about priorities, and how he needed to find a Bible preaching church where he could begin to grow in his relationship with Christ again. I stressed the importance of having a church family that would encourage him in his walk with God. He agreed to get grounded in a good church, and we promised to stay in touch with each other. When we parted we both knew that God had caused our paths to cross.
The reason God sent Philip to the desert was because he had a divine appointment with an Ethiopian eunuch who needed someone to share the truth of God’s Word with him.
God still uses witnesses today who, like Philip, can be trusted to share His love with those He brings us in contact with. If you start recognizing these appointments, it will change the way you look at life. That family with the broken down car on the side of the road—maybe it’s not a coincidence that you happened to pass by just as their car overheated. The guy who thought you were the one that ordered Direct TV—maybe he didn’t have the wrong address after all. Maybe God sent you an appointment because He trusted you to show His love to someone He loves very much.