January 26, 2006

The Right Place at the Right Time!

Proverbs 16:1-9

In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps. Proverbs 16:9


Last spring a woman named Ashley Smith seemed to find herself in the wrong place at the wrong time. Early one morning she went to a nearby convenience store. When she returned, an escaped convict, who had shot and killed four people during his escape, took her hostage and held her in her apartment for about nine hours. He tied her up and threatened to kill her unless she did what he said. But instead of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, she was exactly where God wanted her to be. While most of us might panic, she began to talk to the man who was holding her hostage. She read to him from the best-selling book The Purpose-Driven Life, and slowly but surely something happened in the criminal's heart. A secular magazine called it "an encounter with God." The convict himself called her "God's angel, placed there by God himself." God had directed her steps that morning so that Ashley could become God's presence in the life of someone who had reached the end of the road. We might plan our course, but it is God who determines our steps. Remember this as you stand next to a stranger in the store today, or sit next to a stranger on a train or airplane. God has a way of getting us into the right place at the right time.

Lord, give us the grace to understand that you are the one who directs our every step. Help us to make the most of every opportunity. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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