It was a gorgeous Saturday morning in Kentucky. The sky was bright blue, with not a cloud to be seen in the sky. Football was in the air, and outside chores beckoned. In other words, a perfect first day of fall. 17 guys, mostly older men but with a few high school kids thrown in, were gathered in the kitchen of the church. Cups of coffee in one hand, donuts in the other, we greeted those we knew and introduced ourselves to those we didn't. We ribbed each other good-naturedly about the upcoming football games, talked about our plans for the day, and caught up with each other's lives.
The youth pastor got our attention and told us why we were all there. "There's a lady in the choir that's moving today. She's a single mom with three kids. She's moving from an apartment into a house, and she needs some help. She's not moving far, and she's rented a truck. I've told her we can help until 1:00 PM. If some of you can stay later, great. I have no idea what we're walking in to: how much furniture, how many boxes. I do know she has a rental unit we have to put on the truck as well. Here's the maps. Let's carpool, so we're not flooding the apartment complex with cars. Any questions?"
We all trudged back out the parking lot, and jumped in cars. After a short drive, we reconvened at the apartment complex. "Hey guys, um, this is the right building, but I don't have a unit number, and I forgot to bring her phone number." We started looking at windows, calling out which ones had lights on. The pastor knocked on the first door, waking up the occupants. They hadn't heard of the lady we were looking for. He knocked on the next unit we called out. "Yes, we're moving today, but that's not my name. No, that's not our truck down there. My husband's on the way back with ours. I'm pregnant, and our friend can't help us until this afternoon. It's just my husband to work on loading the truck this morning."
This could have been a "Wow, what a coincidence" moment. And, all to often and to our shame, it would have been a time to say "Oh, sorry for bothering you. Best of luck with your move." Instead, we knew it was a divine appointment, and it was a chance to be the hands of feet of Christ in our community.
The 17 guys that showed up that morning comprised the largest moving crew that had ever responded to a call for help. Honestly, it was too many guys for one apartment and one truck. We would have been in each other's way, and there would have been lots of standing around. In reality, there were now enough guys to move two apartments worth of stuff: one from the second floor and one from the third floor. And to get it all done in an hour and a half.
As we were finishing loading the trucks, the husband said "You guys were a God-send. It was just going to be me this morning, and I figured it was going to take all day to get this truck loaded. Now, my friend can help me unload this afternoon. It's a huge weight off my mind. Thank you guys so much."
We all have those moments when we feel an inexplicable urge. "Wait here for a few minutes." "Stop and talk to that person." "Go this way instead of that way." "Buy some extra milk today." "Volunteer for that work crew." Listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit. You never know when you're going have a divine appointment, and when you're going to be a God-send in somebody's life.