Sunday, September 11, 2005

The Other Time God Showed Up

Sorry it's taken so long to get to this!

I thought once school was back in session, life would get into a comfy routine.

Hah!

I am now the chair for my department, so I am starting out the semester with lots of meetings, paperwork, and other administrator-type junk. Not awful, but a definite black hole for time.

Now where was I?
Oh yes, the other time God showed up.

It was really the first - it happened before meeting my wife.

It happened like this:
I was up at a men's retreat (at Forest Home, for you So.Cal folks) with my church (EV Free, Fullerton at the time), and had some free time on Saturday afternoon. This was the autum of 1988, and my mom was right in the midst of wasting away from cancer. She was going to die, and I knew that, and didn't want to admit it, or face it, because then it would be real, and I'd have to do something other than run away from it all.

On this particular afternoon, I took off on my own, and ended up in a chapel there on the campgrounds. It was empty, except for me. I sat down, and eventually started to pray. I really dumped a lot of stuff on God. I was as honest as I could be, without crossing my own foolinsh line, and admiting she was going to die. Towards the end of the prayer, I got very specific with God, and told Him that what I really wanted, and longed for, was that He would come and sit down beside me. Not invisibly, or spiritually, but really, truly, physically to sit down beside me, and be there for me.

What happened next, you could call coincidence, but it was too specific, and the timing was too precise.

As I was in the midst of praying this - and I do mean at that exact moment - my best friend, Doug, and another friend, Dave, walked in, came up, and sat down beside me. They did not know what I had been praying, they did not know I was there. Of all the people in the camp, these were probably the two best to come in and sit with me. There had clearly been no one in the chapel anytime recently, and nothing was happening for the rest of the day that would lead anyone in that direction. It was just me sitting there within this short period of time, and them coming in a sitting with me at the exact moment I was requesting God to come and sit with me.

It was clear to me then, and continues to be clear to me now, that God was clearly making the point to me that here, on this earth, at this point in time, He uses mere mortals to be His hands, His feet, His face to others.

God did come and sit down beside me.

He did it in the form of Doug and Dave.

The Bible refers to all of believers as the body of Christ. From that day forward, sitting in that deserted chapel, I don't just believe that to be true, I know it to be true.

We are the body of Christ.

This is a blessing and a duty.

3 comments:

Old woman 12:15 PM, September 12, 2005  

What a beautiful story - God often does give us specific answers to our prayers, usually when we need them the most. Thank you so much for sharing both of these moments in your life with us. Carole

AuntieJeanne 5:28 PM, September 16, 2005  

Thanks for posting this story. It's amazing your friends came just at that moment when you needed them most and when you had asked God for help. I don't think it was a coincidence. God Bless.

flaxenanglo 5:29 AM, October 16, 2005  

I had a similar experience once. I was praying at my desk for an answer to a problem. At that exact moment, I got an e-mail from someone who didn't know my dilemma, and it had the most perfect answer.

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