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Monday, June 16, 2008

U.S. Open or a Divine Appointment

Over a year ago, I was scheduled to be in San Diego during the weekend of June 14 & 15. I was able to secure some tickets to the U.S. Open that was held at the beautiful Torrey Pines Golf Course. It was a tad exciting to walk the course and to see the best golfers in the world. The only problems were that the tickets cost $100 each, parking was a hassle, there was A LOT of walking involved, and it was hot... but the most difficult thing was the fact that you had to dodge the other 42,000+ people who were all there for the same experience.

Now, you need to know that I enjoy the game of golf. For the most part, it is one of life's simple pleasures that allows me to get a little exercise in, and, of course, I love to compete. So when you wrap all of this information together, then you might realize to what degree I was hyped up about attending the 2008 U.S. Open (which, by the way, Tiger Woods won).

Little did I know that the reason for my trip was that the Lord had SEVERAL divine appointments for me. See, I had all these great plans, but the Lord had other plans. Can all God's people say????? Amen!!!

The first divine appointment came at dinner one night. There were three of us having dinner at a Mexican restaurant, and in the middle of the dinner, a waitress walks up to our table out of the blue and asks us if we believed in the Bible. That's the equivalent of God lobbing a softball in my direction saying, "Dudley, see if you can hit this out of the ballpark." "Of course!!!" we said, and we proceeded to discover that our waitress had been eavesdropping and had heard us talking about the Bible. She just wanted to learn more. She was from Mazatlan, where she explained that $4.00 was a day's wage in her hometown, so she is waitressing here in the United States to earn money to send back home to her family. She did NOT have a nice Bible, so this week I know the Lord would have me send her a Bible for her continued growth and interest in the Lord.

Secondly, we had to shuttle (catch a ride) to Torrey Pines because of the crowded parking situation and the woman who drove us began to ask some questions about our church. I'm not sure she heard anything I said, but I know that the Lord used me to plant some seeds into her heart. I was able to tell the person who drove us to the golf course that God revealed Himself to us through His son, Jesus, and that's why we study the Gospels to learn more about Jesus.

Finally, once inside the ropes of the tournament, I was one of 42,000 people spread out over a rather large golf course, and had only been inside the gates a few minutes when I heard my name called out. It was a lady who attends the Westside campus ( She, too, was attending the U.S. Open with a friend of hers. We talked for a few minutes, she introduced me to her friend, and--praise the Lord--I was able to walk a hole or two with her friend just to meet him and plant a few seeds within his heart as well.

While I was leaving, it dawned on me that I thought I was there for my own enjoyment, but the Lord had me there for these three divine appointments. For me, it was a vivid reminder of Luke 19:1-1o, where Jesus, in the midst of a vast crowd, looks up and sees Zacchaeus, the Tax Collector, and right there on the spot, the Lord has an encounter with a man who desperately needed salvation.

So remember, whenever you have a plan, the Lord might have another plan. Remember that wherever you go, the Lord might be sending you there for a divine appointment. Remember that even in a crowd, God may have a divine appointment for you, and that appointment will be a MILLION times more significant that seeing someone hit a little ball into a little cup.


christians said...

Hello Pastor, you are sooooooooooo right! Starting about six months ago my father in law will no longer be able to care for himself or live alone. He came to live with us for one month when he had fallen and had to be hospitalized again three times in the hospital in a one month period of time. Now he needed a lot of extra care and my family was more than happy to help and have him, because after all he is the greatest dad, grandfather and father in law ever! As Christians and disciples of our Lord we are to take care of our parents. Remember when Jesus said; " When Jesus therefore saw his mother,and the disciples standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman,'behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home". John 19: 26-27
So we had made our dining room into a bedroom for him, he got a lot of tender loving care and he recovered well and had stopped fallen. All three of his daughters are very financially secured, one even has a mansion here on the coast close to us but he was not allowed to live there or with the other two, who live in Texas.
Well his daughters came to visit him from Texas and seen how we were living, and being that our son has cancer they thought it was too much for our family to handle, we didn't think so! They said they would take Dad back to Texas to live with them and they would take care of him. But that was not the true plan they had planned with the other sister here in California to put our Dad in convalescent home. He would call and tell us he's lonely they didn't talk to him much and other things, of course this broke our hearts, so we started trying to figure a way to get him back here with us. They have the power of Attorney they took it when he was under a lot of sedation at the hospital. After four months of him being their they told him and us where he was going to live. He called us devastated asked if he could come back and live with us instead of strangers of coarse we said we all cried and were so upset when they insisted and took him away from us in the begining. He has been in and around our family since I've been married to his son of twenty three years. We have all been so blessed to have him around and involved in our lives.y Well shortly after that call he had a heart attack, he is recovering well. Sooooooooooo what ever it takes we are going to get our DAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now for these first two weeks of June the Lord has been putting in places and bringing so many people to me with this exact same position I mean exactly. I tell them everything that I have written to you and they go away saying " I knew it was the right thing to do." They kiss me and thank me and I say thank JESUS!!!!!!!!

Adam Gonnerman said...

I love it when those things happen.

windancer said...

You hit the nail on the head again pastor! I went to the emergency room this past Saturday as I had not been feeling well for some time. After discussing mymedical concerns w/ my nurse, she asked me if I believed in God and then reminded me that He is the Almighty Healer and that the physicians were His tools. I was then visited by a chaplain who had attended Shepherd several times. Praise God that I am on a road of recovery and that no matter where I am....God is there as well.

heartbeat said...

Great blog! Not only did I enjoy reading this but I also totaly agree! I was out witnessing with some brothers from my church downtown and as we were about to pray a guy who was totaly drunk decided to pray with us. He felt remorseful and convicted about his situation. To make a long story short we ended up taking him home. We may have saved his life and career because this young man was going to drive himself before he approached us! Wow! Talk about divine encounters! Thank You Jesus!


Rob said...

HI Pastor Dudley
I think God may have another appt for you here in Las Vegas. Hope Baptist is a church with the relational understanding of God like Shepard. As a member of Shepard I feel God has sent me here to link the to churches together.

Robert Epps
702 232 5832

God Bless