A Divine Appointment

Maybe this will encourage someone.

Sometimes it is a Divine appointment. Sometimes it is just being willing to listen to someone…to ask questions…to think for yourself…to put yourself out there…or just to care enough to be someone’s friend.

I don’t like Walmart. In fact, I hate that store and typically never shop there. But I found myself there after work the other night running errands with my sister. I went up to the photo counter. Just a few quick prints while I was killing time waiting. It was after hours, and so usually the photo department would have a sign that said something like “see electronics for assistance”. Well, sure enough there was that sign. But there was a young woman still working behind the counter. Her hair was pulled back in a tight bun and she was wearing a long black skirt. I smiled at her and she came over to assist me. We exchanged the usual “Hello, how are yous”. Usually only “Christians” of some flavor wear skirts anymore. There was a pause in conversation…so I asked her. “Are you a Christian?” She looked up surprised. “No. I’m agnostic. I don’t believe anything.” “Oh.” I said. She continued….”my husband and I hold a bible study once a week at our house though.” “Oh, okay.” I was surprised. “So… if you don’t believe anything, what is it that you do at your bible study?” I asked. She looked even more surprised. “Good question”. She said smiling. “We just ask questions. We try to figure things out by discussing questions with each other.” “So… have you found any answers?” She smiled again and said, “Good question!” (She had a thing for questions. :)) She nodded her head and said how that they had all decided that there would be enough room on earth to hold all the people who have ever been born when the Resurrection takes place. (Wow. That was the first time I’d heard that one.) “Oh, really? Well, why would you need space on earth if we are being resurrected?” I asked. She looked dumbfounded for a second and then said again, more emphatically… “That’s a good question! I don’t know.” She was smiling at me. She seemed both happy and surprised that some random person in Walmart would care to talk to her about her religious views…or lack thereof. “Well, I’m a Christian. Can I give you a book to read?” I said…searching my bag for the copy of the book “DONE” I had ready for such occasions. (For those who don’t know what that book is… it is basically a short read, giving the gospel of Jesus Christ and explaining how there are only really two religions in the world. Those who believe you DO something to earn God’s favor and those who trust what Jesus has already DONE on the cross. It’s an awesome tool for evangelism.) “Yes!” She said. I was so excited she would take it and that I wasn’t hauled out by a Walmart manager for “distributing christian literature”! Haha”I hope this helps you find some answers”, I said and then asked if I could give her my phone number. We exchanged names. I don’t normally give my phone number to strangers…but I’ve taken to doing it quite often lately when the appropriate occasion presents itself. “Do you text?” She asked. “Yes. And I’d love to talk to you more if you have any questions.” She was so appreciative…and I really believe sincerely seeking. I paused before leaving. “You know, I really believe that God wanted me to talk to you today…and to give you that book.” She just smiled at me. She knew I cared. She knew I was sincerely concerned for her soul. And she thanked me.

Sometimes God just throws someone in our path. Sometimes not. Jesus went to SEEK the lost…He didn’t just wait around for some special feeling of “this is my one supernatural opportunity for the week”. He went looking for sinners. In fact, He was a FRIEND to sinners. We should be careful not to be more concerned about “spiritual separation” than the souls of men. We are not to be OF the world…but we are to be IN it. But it is so exciting when you get to see a Divine Appointment play out. God gives us a free will. He gave us a choice to obey. Or to disobey. To be silent. Or to speak out. One thing I have learned with all my heart…is that God loves to use people who are willing! Any time I’ve ever asked Him to use me…He does. Any time I’ve really honestly been open…He takes me up on it. Why? Because He cares about lost souls. He loves them. Unlike us. He doesn’t waste an opportunity to reach someone with the gospel of Jesus Christ…no matter where it is or what it is or who it is….and neither should we.

I Love Him….I Love Him Not

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It’s happened to all of us.  At least once.  By the time we are young women, we’ve all had it happen:  He stands out in a crowd.  You enjoy almost everything about him.  His sudden presence gives you butterflies.  You desire to know his preferences, his dislikes, his opinion.  You didn’t plan it, but every time he’s there, you find yourself talking to him or being near him, and when that wasn’t an option, you were talking about him.

As Christians with high moral standards, it’s easy to wonder at ourselves after experiencing these feelings.  Where in the world did our common sense go?  Don’t we know better than this?  And we end up apologizing to God, making commitments or resolutions, reprimanding our lustful flesh, and failing the very next time we come in contact with the guy.  And so begins the bang-your-head-against-the-wall-routine.
True love doesn’t have to be void of these emotions…”

It’s inevitable to have these “moments” come up sometimes.  You look up and he’s smiling at you.  He walks into the room and you get butterflies.  You notice when he compliments you.  You like him and it’s just a plain fact.  Nothing in the world could change it.

 Love doesn’t deny the existence of these real feelings.  True love doesn’t have to be void of these emotions before it can be true love.  But we have to realize that emotions and feelings in-and-of -themselves are NOT love. They are feelings, and emotions. (Profound, I know!). And if we accept them as such and continue on in our life we can rest assured — we haven’t sinned and haven’t done anyone a disservice.

 If we take that emotion and dwell on it and invest ourselves into it, and allow it to dictate us, then we are obsessing in an emotion and allowing it to ferment into infatuation and that certainly is, in the very least, a disservice to ourselves. It’s also taking advantage of someone at the expense of our fleshly satisfaction. Doesn’t really sound like love. It can’t be. It’s the opposite of love, because love seeks not her own. Enjoying someone purely for our fulfillment is selfishness. Which is a sin.

Conclusion: If we like someone and have these feelings, it is not a sin.

What we do with these feelings is imperative.

If we truly love this man we will be so concerned for his best, his purity, and God’s will for him, it will trump our emotions.

If we “love him not”, we will unregrettably choose to revel in these emotions and satisfy our lusts at his expense.

The question of whether these emotions are okay or not really shouldn’t haunt us.  We should be more concerned of whether we “love him, or love him not”.

 “So, God, here I am. Here’s my heart. Here’s the emotions and feelings. Here’s my love. So baby and immature. Temptation shows me who I am. And I’m a selfish human being. But you in your love will not allow it to exceed your strength in me. I am open to the ministry of Jesus. Here I am, open and bare. Be my Love, be my all. You over anyone else. I’m renouncing me and my self, and my infatuation…even when it’s just a tiny root and bud. No, I won’t accept it. It’s wrong. But I am not condemned in the fact when I notice. I’m not even afraid to smile at the fact. But there I stop. I give it to you. I refuse to pamper the thrill it gives me. I lay it down to rest. You do what you will.”