If you’ve been walking with the Lord for a while, you probably have a story about a divine appointment. A divine appointment is when we find ourselves in a situation with another person where we can sense God’s unmistakable involvement. Maybe it’s when we end up sitting next to someone on an international flight, and they’re curious about the gospel. Or it could be a time when we ran into someone who needed the kind of help only we could offer.
The New Testament is full of examples of divine appointments. We see Jesus running into individuals throughout the gospels like the woman caught in adultery (John 8) or the widow at the funeral procession for her son (Luke 7). We see these kinds of God-ordained interactions with Philip and the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8) or Paul and the Philippian jailer (Acts 16).
If we genuinely believe that God is intimately involved in the life of His children, then we can expect that He will send people our way to encourage, serve, love and witness to. So how can we prepare ourselves for these kinds of run-ins?
1. Pray to recognize divine appointments
Every time we find ourselves in the same vicinity of a stranger, we should be open to the chance that this is a sacred event. This doesn’t mean that we need to force some kind of eternal significance on every interaction, but it does mean that we should be open to the potential that God is orchestrating an opportunity.
Ask God to help you recognize these sacred moments.
2. Make room for divine appointments
By their very nature, these kinds of experiences happen in the course of a typical busy day when you have other stuff to do. We’ll miss them if we’re too focused on checking items off our to-do list or rushing to our next event.
Be willing to create room in your schedule to accommodate the people God brings into your life.
3. Put your phone down and be present
Opportunities for divine appointments are all around us. They could happen while we’re waiting in line at the grocery store, sitting in the lobby of a doctor’s office, or waiting at a table at a restaurant. Unfortunately, the moment people are not actively engaged, they pull out their phones, which means that they don’t really see or engage the people around them.
If we want to make ourselves available for God to spontaneously use, we need to be present. We need to be on the lookout for promptings and occasions because they’re not going to come to us labeled with a sign that says “divine opportunity.”
Look at your world through eyes of faith
Faith helps us see our daily lives in a whole new light. It means believing that God is intimately involved in lives and invites us to be part of fulfilling His goal of reconciliation. Every person in our path is a potential appointment where we can show the love and encouragement of our Creator.
If you’re afraid that you won’t know what to do or say during one of these moments, that’s OK. If God has set an appointment for you, He’s also prepared you for it. But you can find some encouraging suggestions in the article “4 Tips for Sharing Your Faith With the World Around You.”