Wednesday, June 25, 2008

An Unscheduled Stop

In John 4 we read the story of the woman at the well. You have probably heard this story before. Jesus talks to the Samaritan woman, and He prophesies about her life. Then He tells her that He has water for her to drink where she will never thirst again. It's a great story, Jesus does an incredible miracle and the woman gets saved and brings many others to Jesus.

I was thinking about this story though from the disciples prospective. To the disciples Samaria was just an unscheduled stop. It wasn't where they had set out to go. They were actually going to Galilee, but they had to go through Samaria to get ther. The disciples probably weren't happy about stopping in Samaria. The Jews and the Samaritans didn't like each other too well. The Jews saw the Samaritans as second class citizens, and the disciples problably didn't want to be stoping there, but during this seemingly insignificant and inconvenient stop in the road, Jesus did a great miracle.

Sometimes we have to go through places we aren't too excited about going through to get where God wants us to go. Those places may not have been part of our plan, but they were always part of God's plan. Maybe its in those unscheduled stops that God does the greatest miracles in our lives and in the lives of others. If we are only focused on the destination, we might miss the greatest part of God's plan. You see the process is part of the plan.

I know there have been times in my life that things happened that I didn't plan for and wasn't too happy about. Many of those unscheduled stops actually turned in to blessings.

A lady in our church was just telling me last night about her new job. Just a couple of weeks ago, she lost her job (an unscheduled stop). She had been looking everywhere for a new job and was pretty desperate. She was considering taking any job, even jobs that weren't part of what she was trained to do. But even those jobs weren't being opened up to her. She continued to pray and just this past week, God opened a job to her that was just what she wanted to do and is a better job than what she had. If she had never lost her old job, she would never have found this great job. More importantly, through this whole process she learned again that she can still trust God to come through.

Wherever you are at in the journey today, just remember it's all part of God's plan. Maybe you are at a place that you don't really want to be. You are at an unscheduled stop. Just keep trusting in God and His plan, and don't get discouraged with the process.


stephanie davis said...

What a great word! Awesome!

Pump Dude (Kurt M. Richter) said...

It's amazing to look back at all of my "unscheduled stops" and see what God either had planned or turned around for His glory that I didn't always see when I was in the midst of the chaos. It's difficult to always be in that frame of mind (trusting Him to see us through every situation), but that's why the scriptures are chock-full of countless stories of ordinary people who went through the same struggles (some much worse than we could ever imagine going through). The "ordinary" individuals that kept their faith in God became extraordinary champions of the faith - spiritual role models for every generation. Those that lose sight of Who's really in control or try to bypass their "unscheduled stops" can suffer distrous results (mentally, spiritually, relationally, financially, etc). Unfortunately I speak from experience, but thankfully we serve a loving, forgiving Father that allows us to learn from our mistakes!
Thanks so much for this blog, Padre - you're awesome! It's an amazing opportunity to not only share our experiences, feelings, etc with you, but an opportunity for the rest of the Lifegate family to encourage each other.

Chad Benson said...

Hey Kurt, we missed you. Glad you guys are back. Great comment and thanks for the compliment. I am so encouraged by all that God is doing in you and your family and in Lifegate. Congrats on the boys!!!