When you’re stood up
I sat there and waited. And I waited, and waited.
I had made a coffee date for Saturday afternoon at 2:30 and arrived about 2:20 pm. I sent her a text saying I was there about five minutes before our meet time. No reply. Around 2:45, I sent another note asking if she was close. No reply.
After 40 minutes of waiting, I decided to walk around the shopping area and visit a couple of stores. Even though I was becoming experienced in this type of situation (this happened once before with someone, and several last-minute cancellations with a few other girls happened in the last few months), I still held on to the slight chance that she was stuck in traffic and her phone was dead. Ha! Okay, I’m kidding. The truth is I knew without a doubt I was being stood up.
“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” –Isaiah 26:3
The difference this time, was that I wasn’t bothered by it as much as I had been in the past. In fact, as I walked back to my car to leave, I did the “shake my head and laugh” thing, thinking “This is like a comedy routine, and I’m the star!” So knowing I had some free time, I thought I would turn it into a positive thing, and I headed to the grocery store. I had a few things I knew I needed to get for the men’s group meeting coming up the next evening.
I made my way through the aisles of the grocery store, picking up the things I needed … my eye catching the buy-one-get-one-free sale on items I absolutely did not need (nor did my waistline). I fought hard not to buy them. For the record, I failed only once out of at least five times. Darn you, Honey Bunches of Oats!
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” –Proverbs 3:5
I made my way through produce and headed to the broccoli (I know you are wondering – I put a little Italian dressing with a hint of water and cover it in the microwave for 9 minutes). As I reached for it, a lady bumped into me. As she turned to apologize, we both recognized each other from somewhere.
She told me we had met briefly at Starbucks one day, and said, “You’re Christian, right?”
“Absolutely,” I replied. She reminded me that we had talked about our churches and the things that we do there, and we made small talk for a few minutes about that. As we wrapped it up and made the farewell pleasantries, she turned and began to walk away.
Then I noticed her stop — like something came over her — and she turned back to me, put her hand on my arm and said, “I feel the Lord has put it on me to tell you that you’ve been going through something lately with being single, and He wants you to know that He sees it and understands. Don’t give up. He has this under control. You just need to wait a little longer. Don’t worry, He has this.”
I’m sure my mouth was hanging open as she said she felt I should know what was put on her heart to tell me. I told her what she just said was very timely, and I thanked her.
How could this person know what was going on? How could she know what has been happening in my life? How? The answer is easy. God was speaking to me through her. Needless to say, the rest of my afternoon and evening was a mixture of feelings, like I was in a fog but also at great peace.
“Be still and know that I am God.” –Psalm 46:10
I believe God speaks to us in a variety of ways. Sometimes it’s the advice from a friend. Sometimes it’s the words from a total stranger. Maybe it’s a song that comes on the radio just at the right time in your life. Maybe it’s a message that keeps appearing over and over in various ways. I should point out that I started my Saturday morning with a devotional that began with the verse, “Be still and know that I am God.” Sunday morning, another devotional had the same verse. When I opened my Facebook page later in the day, one of the pages I follow had a picture posted there. You guessed it: The text on the picture was, again, Psalm 46:10.
Coincidence? Not for me. It is actually the answer to my prayers. Part of my prayers are simply to be content in whatever situation I am in and have total faith in God, His will and His plan for my life.
So to the girls who have stood me up, cancelled at the last minute, disappeared after meeting me, never to be heard from again … I thank you! Those “trials” or “disappointments” were simply lessons designed to get me where I am today. Today, I am at peace where I am.
Whatever you may be struggling with today, no matter how big or how small … be still and know that He is God!
This article was originally posted on Single Matters on 14 April 2016.