A little girl was running down the path in front of her Mum when she tripped and fell, resulting in a devastating injury that cut deep into to her head.
When her Mum saw how much blood was flowing, she became completely paralysed with despair. In that moment it seemed like she may lose her daughter, and hope began to drain away as quickly as the colour faded from the face of her little girl.
But then just at that very moment the mother’s father happened to drive past. When he realised what had happened, he rushed out of the car to sweep up his bleeding granddaughter from the pavement and raced her to the nearest hospital.
Thankfully, the little girl survived the fall, and she now stood in front of me, describing what happened to her many years earlier. Her Mum was told that if her Grandad had not happened to drive down that street right at that very moment, that she almost certainly would have lost her daughter. I was amazed to see the hand of God at work in protecting her life so many years earlier.
It was clear that the arrival of her grandfather at just the right moment was vital for her survival. If he had turned down a different street or arrived only a few moments later, it would be a completely different story.
Paul also found himself in the midst of an overwhelming situation. Although we don’t know what it was, it is clear it had caused him a lot of stress:
“When we arrived in Macedonia, there was no rest for us. We faced conflict from every direction, with battles on the outside and fear on the inside.” – 2 Corinthians 7:5-7
There was no reprieve, rest or respite as the waves of opposition were relentless. But then just at the right time, some help arrived on the scene:
“But God, who encourages those who are discouraged, encouraged us by the arrival of Titus. His presence… filled [me] with joy!” (7:7)
The timely arrival of Paul’s friend Titus was what was vital to Paul’s survival, and the encouragement brought him great joy.
All of this made me also think about how vital our arrival may be to someone else’s survival. Follow the leading of God’s Spirit, as your arrival may be just what the doctor ordered!