Friday, July 8, 2016

Right Place, Right Time

Sometimes, things just work out, you know?  They just work out.  I see God’s hand in these moments where things just amazingly work out.  And I think as Christians, we are called to point them out so that God can be praised and we can be encouraged.  That’s really what this blog is all about.

In the past month or so, I have seen over and over things just working out.  A few Sundays ago, it was my husband’s birthday.  I planned to be at all three worship services to invite parishioners to our summer Faith Dinners but with celebrating my husband’s birthday, I thought maybe someone else could go to the evening service in my place.  I reached out to a few people but they couldn’t make it.  Then, I decided not to force it and that maybe I was supposed to be there.  We scheduled my husband’s birthday celebration for lunch at a new restaurant in the area and I attended evening worship.

This particular week was the first week we changed our service time from 5:30 pm to 5:00 pm for the summer.  We had a newcomer arrive at 5:30 pm for the service and I invited her to sit by me for the remainder of the service.  When we spoke after worship, she shared with me that she had a feeling that she was supposed to come to this church for four months and that she had been diligent in watching our website and even knew who I was.  She was moved by our core belief “value all people.” 

This gentle soul took four months to walk through our doors by herself and when she did, she was 30 minutes late.  I believe there was some comfort in my presence since she knew from her research that I was the welcome leader at St. Mary’s.  And what a joy to meet her.  What I have learned over the years is that sometimes we need to be at church for someone else, not ourselves.  Right place, right time.

Another recent Sunday, I listened to a newcomer as she told me how she and her husband found St. Mary’s.  She attended our Fall Gift Market last year and when she entered the church and lit a candle, something moved her.  This past fall was the first year we opened our church during the market and posted signs welcoming people into the sanctuary to pray, meditate or light a candle.  It took many months for her to step across our threshold but she did.  I am so glad I was there to hear their sacred story.  Right place, right time.

This past week, we had a couple of newcomers arrive for worship and I helped them find a seat in the pew.  I asked a gentleman to move down a bit and make room for them and their small baby.   I noticed them all chatting after service and it warmed my heart.  As God would have it, he was sharing with them that his daughter was getting married to her partner in September which was a wonderful welcome to these two ladies who were looking for a new church home.  I did not know this background when I sat them together but God did.  Right place, right time.

We often hear that anything worth doing is not going to be easy, otherwise everyone would do it.  I don’t believe that anymore.  I find that while God takes me out of my comfort zone, that isn’t the same as my forcing things to happen or crushing all obstacles to achieve.  Sometimes, obstacles are put in our path to direct us down a different path.  Sometimes, the path of least resistance does set us free.

Where is God directing you to be?  Is there something you are trying to force that you can let go of so God can work it out?