Encounter on the Escalator

September 20, 2006

On Monday I flew home from a weekend conference in Vineland, New Jersey. As sometimes happens on the back end of a trip, I was thinking about things I have to do this week and it seemed overwhelming. Frankly, I felt a bit discouraged. When I got the Atlanta airport, I was feeling tired and down and as I sat on the train that takes you from one concourse to another, the thought hit me that if anyone asked me, How often do you just run into someone you know at an airport when you travel, the answer would be never. It never happens. I am not even sure why I thought that, but I did. Less than ninety seconds later, as I exited the train and stepped on the escalator, i heard voices saying, “I think that’s Ray Pritchard.” At first I thought I was daydreaming, but I turned and saw two smiling faces waiting to greet me. It turned out to be some folks from Michigan who remembered hearing me speak at Maranatha Bible Conference in Muskegon, MI several years ago. When I told them what I had been thinking, they laughed and the wife said, “We almost went into a restaurant a second ago. If we had, we would have missed you.” We stood and talked for a few minutes, and I brought them up to date on our own journey over the last year. And I told them it was definitely a God thing. As I said, I never just “happen” to meet people in the airport, and I never think about it either. But God knew what I needed, and he sent Paul and Conni along at just the right moment. When we parted, I was smiling. Our Father knows what we need when we need it, and he knows how to find us, even on the escalator at the Atlanta airport.

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