Friday, March 11, 2016

Divine encounters

"For we are God's handiwork, 
created in Christ Jesus to do good works, 
which God prepared in advance for us to do."  
-Ephesians 2:10

She seemed lost as she stood in the middle of the mall parking lot.  

We had not planned to go to this mall to walk around, but on a whim it was our destination.  We walked the mall, looked at the stores and then headed back to the car.  That's when my wife, Joye, saw her.  She asked, "Are you ok?  Are you lost?"  Her name is Ariane and she couldn't find her car.  It was clear she was panicking a bit.  

We offered to help her find the car.  She was grateful for the help, got into our car with us and we began the quest to find her car.  We began where we were, driving down each aisle of the parking area.  No car.

Then we went to the next lot, looking for her car.  She was just here visiting she said.  It was a friend's car and clearly she was lost.  Then the next lot, no car.  One lot at a time we circled the mall looking for her car as she pushed the remote to unlock the doors hoping to find this lost car.

"You don't think it was stolen." she asked.  We reassured her it probably was not taken. And then on to the next lot.

She was visiting, so we asked where she was from.  "Israel" she replied.  Oh, my how wonderful for us!  We would have helped anyone, but to help one of Abraham's children, what a blessing.  She told us the town she was from (near Tel Aviv) but we did not know the name.  We told her how thankful we were that the Lord had let us help her.

And then another lot, and she asked, "there's more?"  Around the mall we ventured, row by row, looking for a gray minivan.  DO YOU HOW HARD IT IS TO FIND A GRAY MINIVAN IN TEXAS?  They are everywhere, but we needed the one that responded to her remote.

And then finally, we turned a row and the lights went off on a gray minivan on the opposite side of the mall from where we found Ariane.  Elation!  We had done it.  You could tell she was relieved, we were thrilled to have helped her.  What a blessing for us.

She got out of our car, Joye followed her, gave her a hug and said goodbye.

This was one of those good works God had prepared for us to do.  What a blessing to get to serve our God in such a wonderful way.  We prayed for Ariane after we left.  We can't wait to see what God does in her life.

Closing thoughts- If we had not been watching, not been aware of those around us, looking at others as part of God's plan, we could have missed this wonderful encounter.  I wonder, as we go through our days, how many times we walk right past another Ariane and miss the joy of being part of God's work.

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