Wednesday, March 28, 2007

My nature is to get tense when things get hectic. I don't like this about myself, and have seen the Lord work in my life to make improvements over time. However, it is too easy for me to become short with people.

I have gone through times of significant growth in this arena, and times when I felt like all of the growth had been lopped off in one motion. I am never proud of this. It is a side that people see of me as they get to know me, that should not be present. Sometimes, I even hurt people and don't seem to be aware that I am doing so until it is too late.

Having said that, I want to show you something else I have learned, amid this struggle. I am pretty sure I have shown you this before, but it is a powerful enough lesson that it needs to be repeated. The concept is really quite simple.


Over the past two days, I have shared Sylvia's story with you. What I did not tell you was how that story came about.

We arrived in Mexico on Saturday afternoon. One of the first things we do upon arrival is have the students call their parents, and then take a team picture and post it under the "trip update" section of We do this so that parents know their child is safe, and so they can see their child on the mission field, looking healthy and happy (it's hard not to worry as a parent).

While our team was being trained in the drama on Saturday afternoon, I headed over to the internet cafe to post a written update on our trip down, and the team picture. Upon opening the website, and going to the page which allows me to do this, I found the website was not cooperating. I could not load pictures. I was frustrated.

I returned to the church where we were living for the week, and told David. David is our computer guy on staff. He asked some specific questions, most of which I could not answer, but determined that we needed to go back and try again.

The next day, which was Sunday, I went back. Perhaps it was a fluke. In all honesty, when the pictures would not load, I didn't even try to write an update of our travels the previous day. I returned with a heightened sense of annoyance over technical issues, knowing that parents were waiting to see and hear what was happening.

When I sat down at the computer I was convinced it wasn't going to work. I was very "Disappointed" over the issue. Upon landing in the chair that day, young Sylvia began talking to me. I worked feverishly to write an update while trying to talk to Sylvia in a language I have far from mastered. I had to do one or the other.

Those who know me, know I struggle to do two things at once. I am intense when focused, and can accomplish a lot at a breakneck speed, but don't ask me to chew gum, or talk to you at the same time. I don't do well with distractions. Guess what life is full of? Guess what Sylvia was?
Guess what happened at the computer. No, it still would not work.

Fortunately, I serve a God who is flawless. Even when in turmoil we can be aware of what He brings our way, if we understand some basic principles. I have learned that when I am disappointed over something to look for the opportunity that is awaiting me, rather than whining over the distraction.

On this day, my heightened sense of frustration over technology found me looking for the opportunity the Lord was sure to bring. He brought it. He always does. I just have to learn to look for it, and then be obedient to pursuing what He leads me to.

It is much easier to whine and moan over our disappointments. As a society we generally have learned that "backing our truck up and dumping our junk" on somebody will help us feel better. The truth is, that is often not true. It just perpetuates the aggravation...we relive it while retelling it.

Finding the "Divine Appointment" amid "Disappointment" and then taking advantage of the opportunity before you, will yield a testimony. A testimony will always help eliminate a gripe session.

Griping brings frustration to the lips and ears of men.

Testimonies bring praise and glory to the heart of God.

Look for the "Divine Appointments" He has for you. Share them when you have them.



At 12:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen. Thanks for that Brent.

At 10:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

God is so good. His grace is abundant and I am in awe of his comfort and the way my dissapointment is all the same to my beautiful Heavenly Father. can you explain what "divine appointment" means? sorry... i just don't really know the definition or another way to say it. thank you Brent. I hope that I meet you one say soon.- justine

At 10:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

day...not say. haa -justine

At 4:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

thank you very much for explaining that to me. i just want you to know that i understand now. BJs death resulted in me listening to Brent speak about him and realizing during that that God was calling me to be a missionary. thank you very much. -justine


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