Last week, I was breezing through the produce section of Wal-Mart. I only had a few minutes before I had to be to an appointment so I focused on my list. In and out, that was my plan.
Then, I ran into a friend. I don’t see her often but am ALWAYS blessed when I do. We talked about our kids, school, her work, etc. I knew that she had been through some difficult times lately so; I asked her how she was doing.
She began to cry. I asked her how to pray. She shared her request. She told me details of what had been going on. I told her I would pray and then, I asked her if I could pray right then. So in the middle of the tomatoes and lettuce, I wrapped my arms around her and prayed.
I noticed the time and needed to get to my appointment so we said good-bye. I got in the car and prayed for her. Then I thanked God for allowing me to cross her path. I thought about our conversation and realized what a blessing I had received in seeing her.
Some would say it was a coincidence. But I believe that God is a God of order; that He directs our steps. He has a plan and a purpose for all of us. My purpose was to pray in the produce aisle last week.
2 Timothy 4:2 says, “preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”
What does that mean?
To me, it means to be ready to spread the gospel. Be ready to hold our fellow Christ followers accountable. Be ready to love. Be ready to help. Be ready to encourage. Be ready to pray.
Because I believe what Psalm 139 says — that the Lord searches and knows me, he knows when I sit and when I rise — I also believe that He knows when I am rushing through the produce aisle and when I need to stop and encourage a friend. He knows when I need encouragement.
I think that people cross our paths for a reason. God’s reason. I like to call those crossed paths divine appointments.
Next time you “happen” to run into a friend, ask the Lord how He can use you in that person’s life.