A few years ago I was out hiking and met a fellow hiker out on the trail. He seemed nice enough, but a bit pushy. He was one of these "networking" guys who are kind of bent on swapping contact information. I think he was some kind of financial adviser or other, and was trying to drum up business. The word "synergy" might have even been mentioned a time or two. Seeing how I turn the other way at most things involving "business" and "synergy", I did just that. I turned and walked the other way.
One thing this man said, though, still resonates with me today: "I think this might be a divine appointment."
While I'm not sure I agreed in this particular case, I love the idea of divine appointments. More than that, I love what the idea reveals about God's character. It says that God is still at work today. It says that God could see a meeting important enough that he would change the course of events to make sure certain people get together.
I'd like to think that Third Day's beginnings involved at least one divine appointment.
Mac and I had been making music together for about 18 months, first in the now-infamous Nuclear Hoedown, and then in the fledgling "acoustic" version of Third Day. We had been to a Rich Mullins concert the previous fall. Rich was going through his "acoustic is awesome" phase, so his show featured mandolins and mountain dulcimers. It pretty much blew our minds, so this is how we approached our new band. But the more we practiced and performed, the more we saw the limitations of this format. Most of our audience consisted of high school and college kids like ourselves. Acoustic is cool, but sometimes you just want to rock.
We kept the acoustic thing going, but began to look for drummers. We met with several different guys, and even had one or two of them sit in on shows. But nothing ever seemed to work. Sometimes we would get excited about a drummer but he wasn't into what we were doing. Sometimes it would be the other way around. One guy simply never showed up to practice. It still wouldn't surprise me if this guy just showed up at one of our rehearsals and said, "Sorry I'm late."
Then, in the fall of 1992, Third Day performed at my church. It was a big outreach event involving several local performers. One of the opening bands featured a young drummer and a bass player. I remember watching their show and being really impressed. We needed to find somebody like that.
After the show, we met a guy named Mark. Mark sang in the band with this drummer and bass player. Not only that, but he was their youth pastor as well. He asked Mac and I if we'd be will to perform for his youth group. In lieu of payment, he would have this drummer, whose name was David, help us produce a demo recording.
Now I'm not sure exactly how to define "divine appointment", but I'm pretty sure that was one of them. This guy whom we had never met approached us. And everything that he talked about seemed to be an answer to something we had been praying about and grappling with for months.
It took a lot of courage. But because Mark listened for God's voice in his life, and stepped out in faith, we had what I believe to be a divine appointment. And Third Day exists today because of it.
Do you feel you have you ever been part of a "divine appointment"? If so, what were the circumstances?
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