Clergy Corner: Unexpected adventures

Posted on 16 February 2012 by LeslieM

Last Week, Beth and I were in Ecuador visiting a close friend of ours and setting up a mission trip for June. Our church is going to go to Quito, Ecuador in June for a Medical/Construction trip.

My friend there also works with youth who have problems with drugs. This friend, Rolo, wanted us to see a city where he was working. He said it would only take about two hours to get there.

Our plans were to go to a museum located at the equator but, since it was only two hours, we figured we’ll go visit this city and then go to the museum. Rolo’s friend, Walter, was driving and we headed off on our little adventure.

After a little more than two hours in the car, I asked if we had much further to go. Rolo, said “no.” Walter, the driver, said “yes,” about three hours more. I was shocked. Instead of two hours, it was going to be five. We asked them to turn around and head back. We didn’t want to spend 10 hours in the car our only day in Quito. We wanted to see the city. Rolo was upset. He felt he had ruined everyone’s plans, including his own. We turned around. Shortly afterward, the traffic came to a complete stop. There was a major accident. We would have to wait until they cleared the road. After another hour or so, we were back on the road.

After finally returning to Quito, we stopped at the house of Walter’s mother where his three children were. Walter, we learned, had just lost his wife a little over a month earlier to Cancer. The whole family was still dealing with this loss. After visiting for a little while, Beth, Rolo and I decided to walk to the center of town, about 10 blocks away. While walking around the city, where we had a wonderful time, we received an invitation from Walter’s mom to stay for dinner. We had a great evening with Walter and his family, an experience we will not forget.

The following day, we finally did get to go to the equator and had a wonderful time. Later in the day, Rolo and I were talking. He was still frustrated by what had happened the previous day. I asked if he remembered the only thing Beth and I had asked to do.

I said, “We wanted to go to the ‘Center of the Earth’ and see the equator. The one thing we asked to do, we didn’t get to because of the misunderstanding about the length of the trip.”

But I then asked him if he knew my favorite part of the whole trip.

He said, “No.”

I said, “Walking around the city with you and having dinner with Walter and his family. And, it wasn’t planned. It was a total accident.”

Just like John Piper says, “God has no afterthoughts. Every plan is Plan A. If he reverses a trajectory, that was the plan.”

What a wonderful truth. We can trust fully in God’s plan for our lives. 1Corinthians 2:9 says, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

This is an incredible promise. We have never seen, never heard and cannot even conceive of what God has planned for our lives. Bottom line, we can trust God! He has eye-popping, ear-blasting, mind-blowing plans for us, usually where and when we least expect them to be.


Deron Peterson is is the Senior Pastor at First Baptist Church of Deerfield Beach.

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