This is what I call this story: All “Coffee’d” up and no place to go!
Do you know what a prompting is?
Prompting is when a thought, idea or feeling – more like inspiration – enters your mind or your being – to take action and do something, usually out of your comfort zone – or at least your convenient zone.
I believe I have had many, many, many of these throughout my life; some I have ignored, some I have given thought to; and some I have actually listened to and acted upon and ultimately, I have never been disappointed by what God was telling me to do.
You know why? Because usually it’s a prompting to say or do something kind for someone else – and in blessing someone, I am the one who gets blessed.
I am going to tell you about one of these that happened today, but I can and will share many more and they will hopefully inspire you to begin looking for what I call Divine Appointments in your every day life.
My commute to work is quite long; and most who know me, even though I don’t complain about it often, know that I would prefer a shorter commute. However, I decided to do two things to change MY perspective about my drive to work:
#1: I began listening to tapes/Cds of books and other inspirational stories so that my drive actually has become more enjoyable (and now, I sometimes don’t want to get out of my car because I want to listen to the rest of the message!).
#2: I prayed to God to “position” me to see more opportunities for what I call, Divine Appointments – opportunities to help or simply meet someone from whom I have something to learn. These Divine Appointments are also a chance to be the hands of Jesus and who wouldn’t want to work for him?
These D.A’s have came in many forms, but one recent example, was in the form of an elderly woman, about a month ago, wobbling down a main street in which I take to work – appearing to be very confused, almost ready to pass out. I had to backtrack to her as I couldn’t stop anywhere in the four lanes of traffic. Eventually, when I was able to park, I walked with her, calling 911 as I was holding her up, until finally her husband came in a car – she perhaps had dementia, but I never had a chance to ask – and swooped her up and took her to the hospital.
That day I had a chance to feel good about myself that I stopped and hopefully prevented the very disoriented woman from walking into traffic and being hurt. I thanked God – I am sure it was He who prompted me to stop as he cares about all of his children – and went on my way, after saying a prayer for her healing.
Since that day, I’ve been anticipating “promptings” from my G.P.S.: God Positioning System for more Divine Appointments. Quite interestingly, for the past few months, I was already praying for safety for a group of construction/road repair guys out working in the bitter cold and today was no exception, except that I believe the prompting was to go and buy them coffees and tell them this: God sees the work you do every day and He wants you to know he appreciates it. Thank you for working in the elements and cold weather every single day so we can have safe roads.
The problem is that where they are doing their work, there’s very little space to safely stop a vehicle. And many days, I thought of doing it, but I thought well, by the time I go and get the coffees and bring them back and then try to park in this dangerous area, the coffees will be cold, so why bother?
Truth be told, however, I hadn’t really given up the idea; but I was definitely waiting for the right moment. So today, while having the day off – and it being minus 19 degrees out; there was more than a prompt – I suddenly started to get very excited about providing hot coffees to these guys and knew it was time!
I had the time and there was the need. So, I headed to Tim Horton’s, but not before asking God, how many coffees to get because I didn’t want to arrive being short and have some guys not get one. I was prompted to purchase SIX coffees; milk and sugar on the side with a box of Tim Horton’s timbits.
Okay. Got them. Drove back, and on the way, the dreaded thought came to me: It’s around noon hour; what if these guys have gone for lunch? So I began to drive faster; and then I decided to slow down as I thought to myself, hey wait a minute, if God prompted me to do this; won’t he make sure the guys are there? Sure, I thought. Trust God!
So, after turning myself around twice on the on-ramps and off-ramps, I finally got to the place where I needed to sneak in between the bright, orange pylons. And you know, not one guy was to be found. They’d gone on lunch and the whole site was closed down. I couldn’t believe it. I almost started to cry because I felt so stupid. I had six coffees and a box of 40 timbits and nowhere to go and no one to give them to.
Did I hear you wrong God? Why did I feel such a prompt to do this today of all days, just to find out they’d all left and I had no idea when – or if – they’d be returning. So I drove off with my numerous java, feeling dejected.
Then, I remembered another time when I thought I had heard from God and went to deliver something to someone, but that person wasn’t home and within about 5 minutes God put someone else in my path who needed what I was delivering even more, and I would never have otherwise crossed this person’s path.
So, I said to God: Where do I go now? Is there another construction site somewhere with six guys? I mean, I could just park somewhere and begin giving out coffees but some people might think I’m nuts and want to poison them!
Funny enough, for the first time in my life, I couldn’t find another construction site anywhere! How many can we find all over the city when we LEAST want them! I’m looking for one and can’t find one!
So, I continued to drive and I said this to God: Okay, I’m going to trust you to “prompt” me again and let me “know” where to go.
I drove about ten minutes, until boom, it hit me. There was a fire station that I drive by every day and notice their funny, but educational signs out front to remind people of fire safety and to change batteries in their smoke alarms. I knew it was a very small community fire station but that’s where I felt God was telling me to go.
The funny thing is that last summer, I had a conversation with one of my friends about how we should deliver a care package to our firefighters to show them appreciation, but we never did get around to it and I forgot all about it. So, I pulled into this little fire station and grabbed the stacked coffees and bag of sugar/cream and box of timbits. I rang the doorbell as the outside doors were locked.
I won’t lie: as a single female I was feeling pretty weird walking into a fire station, but I humbled myself and rang the bell anyway. After a few seconds, one guy opened the door and of course, I had no idea what to say, so this is what came out of my mouth:
Are there six guys in here?
The guy just looked at me and said, You need six guys?
Realizing how strange my question must have sounded, I said (which probably didn’t sound any less strange!): God told me to pick up six coffees and I was supposed to deliver them and tell you that He sees the hard work you do and appreciates it very much and to keep at it. I didn’t mention the part about the original plan of construction workers!
He smiled and said: “Well, actually there’s five of us.”
Then, all of a sudden, one by one, five guys walked out into the little lobby. The second guy, after realizing what I had for them, corrected the first, and said, “Actually, usually there’s only five of us, but our buddy’s here visiting so there’s six today!”
I smiled; and I felt my heart expand because I knew who told me to get SIX coffees. I said, “Well, I’m glad, because I hate when God gets his numbers wrong! Here you go. Enjoy.”
They all smiled and thanked me and I could tell how much they appreciated the coffee and I think the message as well.
What I learned from this Divine Appointment is this:
1. Timing of hearing God’s word is important.
2. Even if you get it a little wrong, God’s GPS will put you right again.
3. Nothing God asks you to do goes to waste – he will always provide you the means, the desire and the opportunity to fulfil what he is asking or prompting you to do and in the end, it will bless you even more than the people you think you are supposed to be helping.
So are you ready to go out today and ask God to prompt you and arrange Divine Appointments? It may take you a little out of your comfort and your convenient zone, but I guarantee, it will put you in such a great zone for the rest of they day (and maybe the whole week as you share your cool story with people) that you will never regret being the hands and feet of God!
The bottom line is, when I find myself having a latte of issues with my own G.P.S. God’s is always working to keep me grounded!