Recently, I attended a mandatory business conference in Florida. I absolutely dreaded it. Where I was going booze flows like water, sexual immorality runs rampant, and greed and arrogance abound.
The Holy Spirit woke me earlier than usual the morning of my departure. I needed to spend intense time alone with God before going into the dangerous combat zone. Opening my Blackaby Study Bible to Psalm 123 God spoke to me:
Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their masters,
As the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress,
So our eyes look to the LORD our God,
Until He has mercy on us. NKJV
Blackaby reminded me that my focus should continually be on the Lord. If my eyes are wandering I’ll miss encounters with Him.
I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "You need to look for Me every where you go! Look for Me in the airport, I’ll be there. Look for Me on the plane, and you’ll find Me. Don't miss me in the midst of the mundane meetings. Write down every time you see Me. You’ll be surprised. I Am every where.”
So, I went with eyes wide open and this is what I saw:
On the plane God sat me with two other believers. The young gal seated next to me was the daughter of a Pentecostal pastor on her way to FL to attend a private Christian college. The young man next to her was a politician who attended a Christian college in Texas where he was nominated as a Rhodes Scholar and chosen to study in Oxford England. He said “luck” got him into that prestigious program. I looked him right in the eye and said, “You weren’t lucky, you were blessed.”
He told us he was going to be speaking at his church about a politically sensitive issue. God gave me the boldness to challenge him to be biblically correct rather than politically correct.
Arriving at the Disney Boardwalk Resort, I was struck anew by the extremely creative minds that dreamed and made this fantasy land. I was impressed with the mind boggling talents God gives to people.
At dinner Monday night God sat me next to a colleague whose father past away in August. Because I’ve been down that road, I was able to comfort and encourage him.
Tuesday, I had the privilege of taking my customer and his wife to dinner along with several managers. At dinner, I had the opportunity to share my faith and Prayer Pal with all of them.
Wednesday morning, the Vice President of Sales who is a believer approached me and said, “We need to talk.” To my puzzled look, she responded, “About something we have in common - our faith.” God didn’t make a way for us to talk at the meeting, but He did tell me to regularly encourage, comfort and urge her to live a life worthy of her calling. I’ve marked my calendar to pray for her on the 10th day of every month.
During the monotonous morning session, I prayed heartily for my customer who was presenting Wednesday afternoon. He did a blockbuster job with his presentation! Thank you, Jesus!
As I earnestly prayed, looked and listened, my eyes were opened to the darkness of souls.
Wednesday evening at a mandatory dinner, I sat across the table from a woman who unashamedly discussed her sexual preference and brazenly told us about her drinking binge the previous night, as she consumed more alcohol. Her friend immodestly displayed her figure while flirting blissfully with two married men seated nearby.
The older gentleman, lured into this young woman’s deceitful web, told me about his wife’s battle with cancer. Surgeries have left her severely disfigured. He mentioned that most men wouldn’t stick with a woman in her condition. Without a hint of religiosity, I gently asked him, “What makes you different? Why do you stay with her?” He responded, “I’m not a religious person, but my parents imparted to me the value of marital commitment.”
Later, as I was entering the elevator, I encountered his wife. Recognizing her from previous events, I greeted her warmly. She was severely disfigured and speaking was difficult for her. Heartbroken for their destiny, I took a walk alone and prayed for them. I told God if He put them in my path, I’d offer to pray with her. I didn’t encounter them again.
Thursday, I came face to face with arrogant, greedy people whose worlds revolve around their padded pocketbooks. They’ll tramp on anyone in their way, doing whatever it takes to make mighty money.
With eyes wide opened, God showed me the depth of sin in the world and the magnitude of problems. He burdened me to pray for lost souls and compelled me to intercede for Christians in the workplace.
I thank God for the benefit of working from home, isolated from the pressures of constant corruption. I praise Him for my Christian co-workers. I rejoice that His powerful protecting hand was on me as I traveled into the dungeon of darkness.
It’s good to be back in the light of my Christian home surrounded by Christian friends. However, observing the true depravity of mankind reminded me of the urgency of our mission to search for and rescue lost souls. It’s an enormous and strenuous job that is easily overlooked when we’re spending all of our time with other believers.
I encourage you, open your eyes and look around! God is every where; however, we believers tend to only notice Him in the nice places. Make the most of every opportunity to glorify His name!