Several years ago, I stumbled across the idea of divine appointments. I found the thought intriguing, and have worked it into my spiritual journaling to some extent ever since. But recently, the idea has been on my mind more, and I’m wondering how I can use this concept more effectively in my life.
The whole concept of a divine appointment is based around the idea that God brings people into my life on a regular basis for a moment, and for a reason.
Let me give you an example.
A few days ago, I visited a local restaurant. My waitress apparently knew that I was a minister, even though I’ve never met her before. In the process of waiting on us, she shared a few struggles she was facing in her life, tearing up as she did so. She was really having a hard time. With problems with her boyfriend, her kids, and her finances, she was facing some tough times.
As we paid our check, she asked if we would pray for her over the coming days. Of course, we said yes.
Most of the time, these kinds of interactions come into our lives for a brief moment and then out again. We normally don’t think much about them beyond the moment itself.
Sometimes I just need to read a simple fictional story. Sometimes I just need to allow my mind to relax and get lost in another world, becoming the characters, experiencing the reality that the author weaves as a tapestry in my mind.
And that’s exactly what happened with MindWar by Andrew Klavan.
Set in America, in a current time, MindWar unleashes the technology of tomorrow. Terrorists have created an alternate reality where they can attack anywhere they please through technology and escape unscathed, because America does not have the ability to retaliate. But all is not what it seems.
Rick Dial is a teenage cripple. Having lost the use of his legs in a devastating car accident, he slips into a dark pit of despair and despondency, spending all his time playing video games, becoming a master of various fantasy realms.
But the government has noticed his abilities. And they want to insert him into the MindWar, a virtual reality where his life would be on the line, along with the safety and security of America.
Can he get in and accomplish the mission he is given before the game world destroys him?
Drinking Coffee From A Mug – Most places sell coffee in disposable cups. But there is a distinct advantage in using a mug that can be utilized over and over. Here is a list of several benefits. One that they don’t mention is the possibility of adverse health effects from using heated Styrofoam.
Hidden Miracles Of The Natural World – I really enjoy watching and listening to TED Talks. This one weds the worlds of technology and biology, the manmade world and the natural world.
China’s Mysterious Stone Forest – Here is another testament to the amazing world we live in. This place is incredibly beautiful.
22 Facts About Sleep That Will Surprise You – We live in a sleep-deprived culture. Most people get less sleep than they need. But we would gain a significant advantage if we understood our need for sleep better. This infographic gives you a head start on that.
In typical Pauline fashion, Paul finishes his letter to Timothy with some personal greetings. He lists a few more names, and gives one final appeal for Timothy to come to Rome quickly, which we will look at next week.
You can see this week’s passage in 2 Timothy 4:19-20:
Paul’s letters almost always contain a closing section full of personal greetings. Some are quite short, such as this one. Others are longer, like the list found in Romans 16. But Paul usually does his best to greet and encourage those who are serving in churches where he directs a letter. This second letter to Timothy is no different.
Priscilla and Aquila
Paul first mentions two old friends. He asks Timothy to give a special greeting to his coworkers Priscilla and Aquila. It is interesting to note that these two are somewhere near where Timothy is, perhaps Ephesus. Paul first met these two as tent-makers in Corinth after they had been expelled from Rome by Claudius (Acts 18:1-3). From there, they travel with Paul to Ephesus (Acts 18:18-26), where the church meets in their home (1 Corinthians 16:19). But when Paul writes Romans, they are in Rome, serving another church in their own home (Romans 16:3-4).
What brought them back to Ephesus is unknown. Perhaps it was for similar reasons to the first time they left Rome. Or, since prominent Jewish businessmen traveled a lot in the ancient world, this may have led to several locations. We simply do not know, and can only speculate. Whatever the case, they started or served churches wherever they went, spreading the gospel across the world.
The Son of God came to seek us where we are in order that he might bring us to be with him where he is.
J. I. Packer
I love the first few chapters of Genesis, which give the history of Creation, and the Fall, and several other key worldview events. I grab and read anything I can find that deals with creation and forming a biblical worldview based on the authority and reliability of Genesis and the Bible.
When I saw Biblical Portraits Of Creation, I decided to read it, even though I was unfamiliar with either of the authors. This book will not be on my go-to list of books dealing with creation and Genesis, however it did offer a few interesting insights.
This book examines several different biblical passages that are creation focused. Each passage is examined and reviewed in a very brief fashion, not going into detail very deeply. I was slightly disappointed by this. I would have enjoyed examining each passage in light of creation, seeing how the rest of the Bible supports and refers back to the early chapters of Genesis.
This book does not do that. Instead, it examines each of these passages in a more devotional manner, outlining them for a lighter study, lending these passages more to a preaching outline than a detailed study. Some of these outlines are intriguing enough to consider adapting for future lessons or sermons. Most are not developed that well, and would require a lot of further study in order to make them work well.
Working From Coffee Shops – I have a lot of friends in ministry who claim that a coffee shop is the best place to work. I’ve never been that productive in one, unless I simply go in with a book, and if they aren’t too busy, like the coffee shop I occasionally visit in the next town over. My problem with that location is that the shop is usually so empty, the owner ends up talking with me too much…
Folded Books – Someone has a lot of patience. There’s no way I could accomplish something like this. However, I would love to have one to display in my office.
Lost In A Labyrinth Of Books – This. Is. Awesome. I would love getting lost in such a place.