Tuesday, December 18, 2012

God's Timeline

In my last blog I wrote how God's timing is perfect. Last night God affirmed that to me very powerfully.

I am a bit of a movie buff. I watch quite a few. In between studies and ministry a movie becomes my downtime. I do not own a TV but do not mind a decent well made movie.

It was 730 by the time I finished my dinner. The video shop closes at 8pm and its a a good 30+ minute walk. If I was going I had to get moving and moving fast. I decided to go. Off I went at a military forced march pace. My legs were burning. I would only have a few minutes to pick a movie.

755 I reached the front door. As I entered, the video store owner (who knows me) said you've got 3 mins to pick a movie. Within the allotted time  I had one and approached the counter. The owner is an older man, probably about 60+ of small build, sadly he drinks too much.  As I stood at the counter there was a series of forceful BANGS on the outside window. The owner went to the door and yelled out "What the F*&%^ do you think you are doing you F#$%# idiot!". No sooner had he finished the sentence than he quickly came inside. I sensed the "F&&^%& Idiot" was on the way.

Sure enough a large man appeared at the door . I could tell he was a fairly rough character. I looked up at him and he stopped at the doorway and didn't come inside. I knew God was at work, I'm not that intimidating. The video store owner went behind the counter as he did so the other man left.

The  owner emerged with a baseball bat.

God never ceases to amaze me. When you truly trust Him and seek Him, all the time, then His presence is there all the time. You just need to be aware of it rather than focusing on the world. Its like being in two worlds at once. The now and not yet of heaven bible college called it. This was certainly one of those moments.

"Its not worth it" My words were calming but cut through the haze. The video store owner was certainly in a 'haze' one born of fear, anger and a few beers. "Its not worth it" I repeated myself.
He stopped in his tracks as if the words entered his subconscious. "He is a big man and even if you smash his head in, what then? - its not worth it"

The owner put the bat back in its place. he thanked me for bringing him to his senses. I told him to shut up shop and enjoy a safe night. As I left the video store I was in awe of God. God had orchestrated the timing of everything. My forced march to get me to the video store at just the right time.

I walked home, this time at a much more leisurely pace. I recalled how I had just read from Peter "The devil prowls around looking for someone to devour". He had showed his face tonight not 20 mins after reading that verse. The advice being resist him. Do not get angry.

In my hand I headed home to watch my video. It's title? TIMELINE. God's perfect timeline.

A gentle hand calms the storm

It has been awhile between posts. Nursing has taken all of my time. A stint completed at Hospital re-affirmed my calling to this noble and compassionate vocation. Nursing teaches servitude. I have enjoyed and been challenged by it. After completing my practicals I was looking forward to getting back into Street Chaplaincy. Last weekend I worked both nights.

On the Friday Night myself and another chaplain had prayed at my home before heading out into the streets. Around the corner from where I live there is a pub that is fairly lively but rarely has any trouble. Tonight was different. No sooner had we finished praying than we were standing outside this hotel in the midst of a potential brawl.

A highly volatile young man was taunting and threatening another group (he also had the backup of many friends in the pub). The atmosphere was tense as curses were let loose. Myself and the other chaplain stood amongst it all, praying for peace. There was only three bouncers. If a brawl started they were greatly outnumbered. Instantly they appreciated the two of us being there. In our purple shirts we were mistaken as additional staff. Now the numbers had bolstered to five.

God's timing is perfect. As usual right place, right time.

As  I watched the bouncers try to calm the crowd, I noticed that two of them had completely opposite personalities and demeanor. One was losing his patience and at one point yelled at a client. His antics seemed almost immature. The other, however, seemed more like a Street Chaplain to me than a bouncer. He was calm, gentle, even smiling as he gently touched people ushering them one way or the other. His voice was soft and he matched it was a big smile. I liked him. I said to the Lord "this guy is good".

He was a Tongan, a large lad by anyone's standards, yet gentle with his power. He turned to the two of us and said "How you going fellas, I am a Christian. I go to so and so church"

The bouncer I admired was a true believer and it showed in his actions as much as his words. A glow came over me. He was happy to see us.He thanked us and asked about Street Chaplains. The Lord connected us to yet another organisation and believer within it. Networking. Christian Networking.

The following night I took two of the chaplains down to this pub to meet our new friend. He was encouraged again to see us. It also happened that it was two strapping male chaplains that was on that night. Thus four men of God shook hands. Gentle Men. Gentle Men that calm storms.