By His Grace: When God’s hand is at work
“The Lord will keep you from all harm — he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.”
When walking with the Lord be prepared for many unexpected surprises. Some come in the form of a test of faith, and others just because, and both always from love. Remember, when you and I remain in the posture of obedience, then shall we witness the move of God and on our behalf.
The day had finally arrived for a much-needed vacation back home to visit with family and friends. What made it special was also a surprise visit with my dad. I began my morning as always in the presence of the Lord. However, on this day I was prompted to join in on a Facebook morning prayer group, where at the conclusion participants can send in a prayer request. I mentioned my upcoming trip. And a powerful prayer for safe travels was spoken over me.
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
The day was beautiful for flying. All appeared to be going according to plan. Or so I thought. How many know it is important to allow room for change where God is concerned.
"And he who was seated on the throne said, 'Behold, I am making all things new.' Also he said, 'Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.'"
My flight was scheduled for 6:45 p.m. to Newark Liberty International Airport, arriving at 10:30 p.m. Along the ride to the airport, I sang praises unto the Lord, while thanking Him for His goodness.
“I will give thanks to the Lord because of his righteousness; I will sing the praises of the name of the Lord Most High.”
As I entered the airport parking garage, I failed to hear the first notification on my phone alerting me of an hour delay regarding my flight. New arrival time 11:30 p.m. I relayed the message to my family in New York. I explained it was reported bad weather in New Jersey was the cause of my delay. My brother, who at the time was in Newark awaiting my arrival, replied the weather is fine. I decided to dismiss the matter as I boarded the shuttle bus for the main terminal. Then suddenly, and before departure, there was a last-minute change of drivers. Both were very kind and helpful, which soothed my flight concerns.
Upon arrival at the airline’s customer service desk, the attendant asked if I aware of the flight delay and due to bad weather. I informed him I was aware of an hour delay. He then informs me there was second update. My flight was delayed four hours, which put my arrival at 1:30 a.m. I expressed my discomfort of flying at this time of night. Noting within me that this was becoming a challenge, I quickly relinquished all concerns over to the Lord.
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
I cleared security and proceeded to an eatery near my gate. At a nearby table sat a young lady who along with her college friends were awaiting their flight to California. We discussed our upcoming trips and surprisingly enough our faith. When suddenly I receive a third notification, “Your flight has been canceled, please proceed to the customer service desk for further update and changes.” You can imagine my demeanor at this point.
“It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”
Seeing I was taken back by turn of events while maintaining my cool, the question posed from the young lady, “What will you do?” I was mindful not only was she expecting an answer, so were those at the surrounding tables who heard the exchange of conversation. I was led to direct my response solely to her, “I could do one of two things. I can get upset and be indignant for the inconvenience, which will get me nowhere. Or I can go in love and show respect. Ask questions. And politely listen to a response in hopes to resolve the situation. I choose the latter and to do it the Lord’s way. Walk in love.” She smiled and wished me well. And I prayed for safe travels for her and her friends.
“He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.”
After several attempts of finding suitable flight accommodations which were all a no-go for the next 72 hours; I became keenly aware God had shut every door possible for this trip. And I graciously accepted the airlines sincere apologies and full financial credit to be utilized for another date. I then informed my mother in New York what had transpired. She immediately thanks the Lord for his divine intervention.
“The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them.”
Three hours later, I retrieve my luggage. And to my surprise the original shuttle bus driver that was switched early was returning me to my car. She inquired what happened, I explained. Once again, God used this opportunity to use me as a witness before another.
As I prepared to depart the garage, I was reminded to contact my cousin Stacey who was expecting me for dinner in New York. Once again, I explained what occurred. What she shares next floored me. She informs me that there was a huge storm taking place in her area and heading in the direction of New Jersey. I began thanking the Lord for he had protected me from that which was unseen. If it had not been for the delays and cancelation, I would had been on a plane heading into a dangerous situation.
I completed my vacation at home and undisturbed. Choosing to spend all five days in the presence of the Lord. And I honestly can say it has been the best vacation I have ever experienced.
If it was not for the Lord, where we would I be?
It is never enough to say we trust the Lord; we must truly believe in heart what is confessed with our mouth and then live it out. I have concluded these "surprises" are designed to occasionally reveal our faith in him and all that it entails. Praise the Lord for his divine protection.
Until we meet again, God bless and go in peace.
Bible references: Psalm 121:7-8 NIV; Mark 11:24; Revelation 21:5; Psalm 7:17; 1 Peter 5:6-7: Deuteronomy 31:8; Psalm 23:3 NKJV; Psalm 34:7 ESV. To obtain the full benefits of each verse, please read the five verses before and after each verse. -- Edith Nevis can be reached at 857-2200 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.